Sunday, March 3, 2024

Joe Montemurro ‘disappointed’ in players that travelled to Dubai and says matter ‘dealt with internally’

Arsenal manager Joe Montemurro has confirmed that Arsenal players that travelled to Dubai have been “dealt with internally.” The Gunners boss said that he and the club understood and shared the feelings of anger towards three Arsenal players that flew to Dubai during the winter break, one of whom subsequently contracted covid, with last weekend’s game against Aston Villa postponed as a result.

Montemurro told Arseblog News, “We had some official scenarios around players going to Dubai and in the madness of that last week before Christmas things changed and were locked down. Obviously our feeling is one of disappointment. From my perspective it’s about the moral compass of the club and the individual and the consequences of these situations.

“The players have apologised for their actions and we have dealt with them internally. For me the big thing now is that this doesn’t happen again. For me it’s all about actions now, it’s about making these players understand the circumstances, they are rolemodels and they are in the public eye and we won’t be able to tolerate these decisions, not just from a sporting perspective but from a morality perspective.”

Montemurro also said that he “totally understands the anger of the greater public,” adding, “we have to be better.” During the press conference, Joe was quizzed by other journalists on the issue too, particularly around the potential impact on Jen Beattie, who has just finished radiotherapy after being diagnosed with breast cancer.

“In the moment they probably didn’t consider those situations but I can guarantee you that going forward they have understood the effect and the potential repercussions. We can’t change the past, we are disappointed that it happened, are we going to make sure it doesn’t happen again and the situation is dealt with properly? Absolutely. We need to make sure the players learn from their actions and that they don’t happen again.”

Joe was pressed on whether the incident might have repercussions on team spirit, “There are all different emotions flying around initially but we’ve had a good discussion internally and we’ve understood and dealt with the situation at hand.” Joe was also asked whether the players- only one of whom has been identified- would issue a public apology.

“That’s something I will have to leave that to Arsenal to make that decision, we’ve dealt with it in the way that we believe is right the biggest thing for me is action and that when faced with these moral decisions they make the right one. From my perspective I want to say we’ve dealt with it, we understand and we hope it won’t happen again and move on from here.”

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They’ll be starters for the next game as Borges was after his Dubai trip. If not, there are double standards in this club. lol


Borges bot !!


Well said from Joe. I hope nothing will stick with the club long term (grudges or something lik that).
Up The Arsenal!

Charles MMM

I always believed that women are better than men in the making of such decisive decisions, and in this regard, I’m dumbfounded and totally disappointed too at hearing this about some of our highly esteemed ladies. Hopefully, they’ve understood the wrong impact and impression their action has brought on the entire team and the Arsenal FC brand (not minding the huff called Willian being shielded from public scrutiny by his coach). Thanks to Joe handling this much better by calling their act what it is without unnecessarily throwing them under the bus. Just like Willian, what they did was absolutely… Read more »

Tim Stillman

We actually put together a really interesting podcast on the difference in moral expectation between male and female players

Fun Gunner

I haven’t listened to your podcast but this is not a case of unfair moral expectation placed on women – though that is *definitely* a problem women face in general. I don’t regard it as a worse offence than when perpetrated by Willian et al (who should have been disciplined but wasn’t), it’s just that it’s more surprising and disappointing for me, personally, because our women’s squad has shown so much character and professionalism to date. So I did expect them to behave better, not because they are women, but because they have, as individuals, set a higher standard. Like… Read more »


I havent had the chance to listen to the podcast yet, but to be honest, is it not also a matter of financial means? The men’s probably has quite a lot higher wages they can be tempted to spend on idiotic things such as dubai trips and goldplated steaks?

Tim Stillman

Worth listening, there are deeper seated reasons, a lot of them around the trouble society has with the idea that women’s sport is well paid or well rewarded, our expectations of it are still that it is amateur. But it goes beyond sport, essentially because we still place women in their domestic sphere, we struggle with the idea that they can be arseholes too sometimes. Or that they can be ambitious, competitive and sometimes difficult.

Peter Story Teller

Professional footballers are humans and humans make mistakes. Unfortunately for them that the mistakes they make are in full view of the general public when they are looked upon as role models.The important thing is what is learnt from those mistakes.
The players concerned owe their team mates and management an apology, and they owe Aston Villa an apology. At that point move on, pull together as a team and go an win some football matches.


An utter disgrace to the club.

They should be sacked.


you’re ‘Arsenal Truth’ guy, aren’t you?


For once, I completely agree with you.


Pathetic response. Seems you can do something you know is wrong then just say Sorry I know it was wrong, with zero repercussions. Come out and say what the sanction is Joe .. otherwise it just looks like you’re weak.

SB Still

I was amused seeing the news about the ManU ladies Dubai trip. Didn’t realise we have a similar situation.

Wasn’t there any awareness programme for the players (men and women) earlier, even after Willian’s trip?

I’m used to a classy Arsenal. Hence this is jarring.


Hindsight is a wonderful thing. As he acknowledges they had official scenarios about players going – presumably those scenarios did not state they could not go. People forget how quickly the situation developed; two weeks earlier and it would have been a non-story. At the end of the day anyone who is angry about this has an anger problem.

Fun Gunner

I share Joe’s disappointment. I hope the offending players are disciplined – fairly – and if there were genuine grounds for misunderstanding that factor should of course be taken into account.

Polly Plumb

Tim, seeing as it seems this is about as far as we are going to get in terms of an apology, do you know if the guilty parties are at least remorseful?
I can’t imagine they’ve taken a bashing like this before (in the media) – are they aware of the feeling that’s been generated as a result of this jolly?
Finally, are you surprised by their actions, knowing them as people?

Tim Stillman

I’ve not spoken to any of them since but all I can say is that they’re all good people, they made a mistake, it happens. They’re not cut off, they’ll know. The trips were booked before the added restrictions came into place, it’s still a bad mistake but I can see why that’d make you hesitate. Things changed quickly.

Polly Plumb

Thanks for your time – great website btw!.

Peter Story Teller

I accept these trips were pre-booked and that the situation was fluid but I work in an industry where it is common for overseas trips to be arranged with only 24 or 48 hours notice and it is not uncommon to arrive at the airport only to be sent away again because the trip has been postponed. Flights and hotel bookings anywhere in the world can be changed or cancelled almost instantly these days so having the trip booked prior to the travel lockdown to me offers no mitigation. That said, I am certain that the girls concerned are remorseful… Read more »

Tim Stillman

Yea, ultimately they have been told they messed up, they know they’ve messed up. It’s done and I think Joe is right that it’s about what happens going forwards.

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