Wenger hits back at Eduardo boo-boys

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has hit back at the boo-boys after Croatia striker Eduardo was jeered during Wednesday's 2010 World Cup qualifier with England at Wembley.

The Brazilian-born front-man has become a national hate figure after appearing to dive to win Arsenal a penalty in their Champions League play-off with Celtic, and has subsequently been handed a two-match ban by UEFA, which the Gunners are appealing.

Wenger has also been heavily criticised for jumping to the striker's defence, despite video evidence doing little to suggest that Eduardo was upended by Bhoys' goalkeeper Artur Boruc.

But the Frenchman has hit back, insisting that were Manchester United goal-getter Wayne Rooney to win a penalty for England by diving in next summer's World Cup final in South Africa, few would voice their concerns.

"England are in the World Cup next year and if Rooney goes down in the last minute of the game, and England win the World Cup, do you really think he will be slaughtered for it?" he said.

"It's a very emotional situation. Being a hero or being a cheat depends very much on which side of the camp you are on.

"I believe it was a penalty, but when you see the incident on the television Eduardo does make a bit more of it.

"But it's a very fine line between being shrewd and cheating the referee. You cannot prove intent from a guy who is touched.

"He goes down and shows the referee that it is a penalty."