x Abu Dhabi, UAESaturday 22 July 2017

Gallas dropped from Arsenal team

William Gallas' future at Arsenal is in doubt after being dropped from the team to play Manchester City following his revelation that the Gunners squad is divided.

MANCHESTER // William Gallas' future at Arsenal is in doubt after being dropped from the team to play Manchester City following his revelation that the Gunners squad is divided. The French defender said earlier this week that there had recently been arguments among the players, with one insulting his teammates during a match, and said he could leave if Arsenal does not end its five-year wait for a Premier League title.

Gallas has been stripped of the captaincy to play City and is not playing. The goalkeeper Manuel Almunia has been handed the captaincy role. Gallas, 31, also raised concerns that Arsenal's highly rated youngsters may not have always shown the necessary toughness when it mattered this season. Arsenal have already lost four league games, one more than all of last season. Launching a robust defence of his captaincy, Gallas said that he was speaking out because "there are things that can't be said and can't be tolerated."

"I am trying to defend myself a bit without giving names. Otherwise I'm taking it all (the blame). It's very frustrating," he said. "I'm 31, the player is six years younger than me." The only players aged 25 in Arsenal's squad are Robin van Persie, Emmanuel Eboue and Bacary Sagna. Gallas said he broke up an argument in the Arsenal changing room during the halftime interval against Tottenham. Arsenal went on to throw away victory after leading 4-2 with just minutes remaining.

"There was a problem at halftime," Gallas said. "The only thing that I could say at halftime was, 'Guys, we resolve these problems after the match, not at halftime.'" *AP