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Arsene Wenger confident that football's time-wasting clampdown will succeed

Arsene Wenger confident that football's time-wasting clampdown will succeed

Arsene Wenger has vowed that football's new time-wasting rules will work in the long term.

Referees have been instructed to add on an increased amount of injury time in Premier League matches this season in a move that has sparked a backlash in some quarters but the former Arsenal manager says the new protocols will have the desired effect.

Wenger, who now works as FIFA's chief of global football development, said: "I am against time-wasting. For the equity of the game, we want the team who wants to play to be rewarded.

"For the respect of the fan who sits in the stand, the teams to play, to encourage the teams not to waste time.

"The logic should be for me to add the time wasted on purpose or accidental. Do you limit that time? Personally I am not in favour of limiting it, because once it’s the same thing as the offside, people say give them five inches or two inches and then people say why not three. Once there’s no logic behind it, it’s difficult to defend the decision. So we have to continue to do that.

"I feel having watched the last two World Cups in Doha and now in Australia, it discourages the team to waste time."

Fans are concerned that longer matches will have an impact on their journeys home from games but Wenger says the new rules are borne out of attempts to apply fairness to the game.

He said: "I believe that, if I support Arsenal, if Arsenal’s visiting team is leading 1-0, and they lie down every two minutes I become upset. If on top of that after 90 minutes there is no added time, I become crazy. I want my team to have the chance to come back, so it depends always on what side.

"If you want to take the subway it’s not ideal, but if it’s between taking the subway or my team winning the game, I still choose my team winning the game!"

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