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Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger keen for UEFA to re-examine away goals rule

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger attends a press conference at London Colney
Image: Arsene Wenger: Football has changed since introduction of away goals rule

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has called the away goals rule “outdated” and believes it should be modified to reflect modern-day football.

On Tuesday, Wenger saw his side eliminated at the Round of 16 stage of the Champions League for the fifth consecutive year, losing to Monaco on away goals with the aggregate score level at 3-3.

Last week, Chelsea were knocked out of the Champions League on away goals after their tie with Paris Saint Germain also finished level at 3-3.

Wenger has campaigned for the rule to be reformed in the past and raised the issue as recently as last summer, during a UEFA coaches meeting in Geneva.

And the Frenchman once again called on UEFA, who introduced the rule into European competition in 1965, to re-examine it.

He said: “Two (English) teams have gone out on away goals. That I think should be questioned because it is a rule that is outdated now. That has to be changed and I fight for that for a long time.

“Look it should count maybe after extra-time because this rule has been created in the 60’s to favour teams who attack away from home. But since then football has changed and with this rule the weight of the away goal is too big today.”

Wenger is not overly concerned that no English side has reached the quarter-finals of Europe’s premier club competition but admits Barcelona look a cut above the rest of the teams still involved.

“In direct knockout it’s important that you are very efficient and a bit lucky sometimes as well. None of the teams, apart from Barcelona, looks to be superior in Europe today. I think the other two teams could have gone through in Chelsea and Arsenal.”

UEFA has confirmed to Sky Sports News HQ that there are no plans, at this time, to change the away goals rule.

A spokesperson for European Football's governing body said: "There have been informal conversations internally and at our Football Committee meetings but that is the extent of it.

"There are no plans, at this moment, to change or eliminate the away goals rule".

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