Antonio Conte: Strange for Chelsea to get another red card against Arsenal
Last Updated: 17/09/17 6:55pm
Antonio Conte says it is "strange" his Chelsea side have finished a game against Arsenal with 10 men for the third time running.
David Luiz was sent off late on by referee Michael Oliver for a lunging tackle on Sead Kolasinac in the 0-0 draw at Stamford Bridge on Super Sunday, an incident manager Conte did not wish to talk about in depth.
Instead, Conte referenced the Blues' previous two games against Arsenal - the Community Shield in August where Pedro was sent off, and the FA Cup final in May where Victor Moses saw red - and admitted the circumstance was "very strange."
Conte, who also suggested Luiz was tripped by Alexis Sanchez in the build-up to the foul, telling Sky Sports: "I don't talk about the referees, but the only thing I can say is we need to see what happened before the tackle.
"I repeat that we have great respect for them. But sometimes, it is very strange to finish for the third time in a row with 10 men against Arsenal."
Conte's opposite number Arsene Wenger said: "It looked to me to be excessive force - a tackle with excessive force. Did he catch Kolasinac? I don't know. I would have to see that again on video."
His dismissal was the third time in five league games this season that a Chelsea player was sent off, as many as in their previous 73 games. Conte said he would address the need to maintain discipline again with his players.
"For sure it's strange. A strange situation," he told reporters in his post-match press conference. "I was a player and it can happen, this type of period and you are not so lucky to receive these red cards.
"I think we have to try to improve all the situations physical, tactical and we will try to pay more attention in the future."
"I hope to be more lucky with the referee's decision, for us and also for the opponent. Sometimes the opponent deserves a red card and instead they continue to play with 11 men."
Arsenal had the better of the chances at Stamford Bridge, and Conte paid tribute to both sides for what he described as an "open" game, with both sides going for the win.
He added on Sky Sports: "I think it was a good, open game. Both teams tried to win the game and created chances to score. I think it was a good game but tough for both teams.
"Every game against Arsenal is always very tough and we knew very well what type of game we had to face today and it is normal I think. Arsenal and Chelsea are both great teams and I think it is a good draw."
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