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Ex-Arsenal star hits back at Robson over Wenger ‘dictator’ slur

11:38 13 December 2012

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger (centre) on the touchline at Bradford. Photo: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger (centre) on the touchline at Bradford. Photo: Anna Gowthorpe/PA Wire

PA Wire

Former Arsenal midfielder Ray Parlour has rubbished suggestions Arsene Wenger runs the club like a dictatorship.

The Frenchman is facing one of the biggest tests of his 16-year tenure this season, with the Gunners having crashed out of the Capital One Cup at npower League Two Bradford after a penalty shoot-out on Tuesday night and struggling for consistency in the Barclays Premier League.

Stewart Robson - who came through the Arsenal youth system and played at Highbury from 1981 to 1986 - branded Wenger “a dictator in many ways” and claimed that there was a growing rift between the manager and his assistant Steve Bould.

Parlour was part of Wenger’s squad which won the Premier League and FA Cup three times before joining Middlesbrough in 2004, and believes his former boss was always approachable.

“Stewart Robson has got his own opinions, but I played under Arsene Wenger and thought he was a great manager when I was there,” Parlour told Sky Sports News.

“He was always one of those managers you could talk to.

“Arsene Wenger is one of those sort of guys who will always try to stick up for his players.

“We would have meetings after games and it would all come out in the dressing room, which (is how) it should be. It is a private matter between the players, the manager and the staff.

“It was quite embarrassing to lose to Bradford, there is no doubting that, but I think he is one of those guys who does criticise people behind the scenes instead of in the press.”

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