Callum Wilson called out the dark arts deployed by Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka as a ‘clear tactic’ agreed upon in advance by Arsenal after Mikel Arteta’ side outfoxed Newcastle at home on Sunday.
The visitors’ 2-0 victory saw captain Martin Odegaard draw first blood with a 14th-minute strike against the run of play before an own goal by Fabian Schar ensured that the Gunners stayed in the hunt for Premier League glory after cedeing the top spot to Manchester City in midweek.
After the final whistle Eddie Howe cited an early overturned penalty call for the home side playing a crucial role in shaking the Magpies’ mentality.
But his striker Callum Wilson laid the blame more firmly on Arsenal’s time-wasting tactics that disrupted Newcastle’s attempts to take control of the match tempo.
Speaking on his Footballer’s Football Podcast on Wednesday, Wilson highlighted an incident with the former Arsenal captain that convinced him of foul play.
Callum Wilson blamed Newcastle’s 2-0 home defeat on the deployment of dark arts by Arsenal
Granit Xhaka (centre) was a particularly bad offender who riled up the 31-year-old striker
‘He has sat down with his groin [injury] and he is smiling away like there is nothing even wrong with him,’ Wilson told his co-host Michail Antonio.
‘I am like “get up”. He is obviously just wasting time. I think every one of their players went down at some point and got the physio on. And got up after a couple of minutes of delay.
‘They obviously come with that clear tactic. When you are the home team trying to get momentum in the game, it frustrates you.
‘Then you are trying to pick him up and he starts talking. You know what it’s like. You are from the streets, you don’t allow people to talk to you like that. I am like, off the pitch, people don’t talk like this to me, so I am not going to allow it on the pitch.’
The weekend’s defeat brought to an end what has been a strong recent run of goal-scoring form from the England international.
The 31-year-old scored two in each of his previous two matches – against Southampton and Everton– and netted a goal in the match during the thrashing Newcastle gave Tottenham at St James’ Park in April.
More pertinently, the result may have threatened Newcastle’s Champions League aspirations.
The Magpies were unable to take advantage of Manchester United’s defeat at the London Stadium and improve their points cushion in third place.
Instead, they sit just three points ahead of the Red Devils, and four against Liverpool, following Jurgen Klopp’s team’s late run at the European spots.
Howe also vented his spleen on what he decried as deliberately infuriating tactics from Arteta’s side, saying: ‘It was frustrating from our perspective. We wanted the ball the play, we wanted to find our rhythm. It was very stop-start.
‘That was suiting, of course, the away team. As the home team, you want the ball in play, so it was frustrating in that sense for us, definitely.’
His opposite number in the dugout demurred when drawn into the conversation, arguing that the style of play wasn’t in Arsenal’s nature.
‘For sure, our team is not like that,’ Arteta claimed.
‘I don’t even want to get close to that conversation with the game we had to play today. We have done what we had to do to win the game and I am very happy with that.’
The Newcastle manager’s rivals will no doubt view his post-match comments with raised eyebrows, after spending the season accusing Newcastle of similar dirty tricks.
Manchester United’s Erik ten Hag has been particularly vocal about Newcastle’s predilection for time-wasting.
Ahead of the two teams’ Carabao Cup final meeting at Wembley in February, Ten Hag highlighted the plays and called the side ‘annoying’ – with Howe response labelling the Dutch manager’s accusations as ‘nonsense’.
A month later, Ten Hag appealed to the referee before their next meeting, telling Stuart Attwell to pay close attention to Newcastle’s machinations.
But despite the swirling accusations, Mail Sport revealed on Monday that Newcastle weren’t in fact the biggest time-wasters in the league.
The Switzerland international was unrepentant as the visitors waltzed off with the away win
Eddie Howe (left) mulled over his ‘frustration’ with the underhand tactics but has frequently been criticised for ordering the same from his players by Erik ten Hag
That dubious honour lies with Brentford, who wait an average of 31.4seconds to restart play.
Newcastle sit in second place, taking 29.9secs on average.
Wilson will look to get his side back to winning ways during their last four ties of the season.
The Magpies will play Leeds, Brighton, Leicester, and Chelsea on the final day of the season, before they can start dreaming of a season spent challenging for the Champions League.
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Sports Event Casino Handicap Description
|PK||0||It means not giving in to each other, and winning 1 point wins all.|
|0-50||0/0.5||Indicates that when the handicap team is tied with the transferee team, the team betting on the handicap loses 50%.|
|0 loss||0.5||Indicates that when the handicap team is tied with the transferee team, the team betting on the handicap loses.|
|1+50||0.5/1||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the team betting on the handicap wins 50% and wins all 2 points.|
|1 level||1||Indicates that when the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the two teams will tie and win by 2 points.|
|1-50||1/1.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the team betting on the handicap loses 50% and wins all 2 points.|
|1 loss||1.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 1 point, the team betting on the handicap loses all and wins by 2 points.|
|2+50||1.5/2||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the team betting on the handicap wins 50% and wins all 3 points.|
|2 flat||2||Indicates that when the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the two teams will tie and win all 3 points.|
|2 losses||2/2.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the team betting on the handicap loses 50% and wins all 3 points.|
|3+50||2.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 2 points, the team betting on the handicap loses all and wins all 3 points.|
|3 losses||2.5/3||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the team betting on the handicap wins 50%, and all 4 points win.|
|3 levels||3||Indicates that when the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the two teams will tie and win all 4 points.|
|3-50||3/3.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the team betting on the handicap loses 50% and wins all 4 points.|
|3 losses||3.5||When the handicap team wins the handicap team by 3 points, the team betting on the handicap loses all and wins all 4 points.|
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