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Wenger: Hazard is not a violent player

ESPN staff
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Eden Hazard kicks a ballboy

Arsene Wenger has weighed into the ongoing furore over Eden Hazard and the Swansea ballboy by stating that "both were wrong", and claiming that any punishment beyond the red card would be "ridiculous".

Hazard was sent off for kicking the ballboy during Chelsea's Capital One Cup semi-final defeat at the hands of Swansea.

The Arsenal manager also said that, although he felt the ballboy should not have wasted time and the Chelsea player did not want to hurt him, Hazard went in "too strongly".

"Both were wrong," Wenger said. "The ballboys are there to get the ball back as quickly to the players and into the game, they are not there to waste time.

"You have to educate the ballboys, that no matter if it is the home team or the away team, you have to get the ball back as quickly as possible. Everything else is not acceptable.

"For the rest, Hazard is not a violent player. He wanted to get the ball back as quickly as possible, which you can understand. In my opinion, he went in a little bit too strongly but I don't think he wanted to hurt the ballboy. He just wanted to get the ball back as quickly as possible."

Wenger also agreed that a line should now be drawn under the incident.

"Yes, we should not become ridiculous there. He did not want to harm anybody. You finish the story with the red card."

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