Updated: Saturday, 22nd September 2018 @ 5:47am

Tale of two penalties: Roberto Martinez furious with 'soft' award in Wigan Athletic's defeat to Arsenal

Tale of two penalties: Roberto Martinez furious with 'soft' award in Wigan Athletic's defeat to Arsenal

By Matt Simpson

Wigan Athletic manager Roberto Martinez was left furious at a two penalty decisions – one given, one not – during his side’s defeat to Arsenal.

Mikel Arteta converted the only goal of the game when the Gunners were awarded a controversial after Theo Walcott appeared fouled by Jean Beausajour.

A fifth straight game without a win leaves Wigan languishing in the bottom three, and Martinez vented his anger at two decisions which cost his side.

"The penalty was very, very soft, if anything, I think,” said Martinez.

“Theo Walcott is very clever there. It's difficult to tell if there is contact or not.

“That doesn't mean it's a penalty, the contact has to stop you from staying on your feet.

"The player's got real experience and he knew a penalty would change the game and give them real hope of the three points and I thought he bought the decision.”

Arsenal took the lead on the hour mark when Walcott tumbled to the floor under the challenge from Beausajour before Arteta confidently slotted home.

In the dying minutes the Latics were appealing for a handball against Kieran Gibbs to no avail, something which infuriated Martinez further.

"Then in the other box you've got a clear handball. The ball travels a long distance and the arms are not in a natural position,” he said.

"I'm really disappointed because the players don't deserve the feeling that they've got now.

Despite the loss, the Spaniard believes his players performed well and said they displayed a great mentality to continue searching for an equaliser.

"We are in the middle of a period where calls are not going our way and we've got a few players missing,” he added.

"I thought we played really, really well. We played with a great mentality. The players displayed a big team mentality and I couldn't be prouder."

Image courtesy of BBC, via YouTube, with thanks.

For more on this story and many others, follow Mancunian Matters on Twitter and Facebook.