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Sports

Wenger: 'We must tackle doping problem'

The Arsenal manager has been outspoken about doping in football while scandals have rocked other sports. Wenger has been asked by the English FA to explain his recent comments.

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has continued to speak out on doping in football despite facing a hearing with the English Football Association over previous comments.

With track-and-field rocked by recent doping scandals, Wenger warned the football authorities to toughen up tests against players and said the sport was "full of legends who in fact are cheats."

Arsenal lost to Dinamo Zagreb in the Champions League this season with the Croatian champions fielding Arijan Ademi who failed a drug test. Wenger is calling for blood tests as part of a stronger crackdown on doping in the sport.

"You see the doping problem has suddenly turned up in track and field as well, we have a problem in cycling and then to think that we in football are immune because they are football players is absolutely wrong," he said in the lead up to his side's match at West Brom.

"When people are caught they need to be punished and the clubs punished as well. Because it's a little bit unreasonable to think just because we are football we have no problems with it.

"Today, when you play away in the Champions League, most of the time we lose two hours when there is a doping control because people cannot fulfill the [urine] tests. It's simple. Why can we not do it? In the other sports they do it."

The FA have invited Wenger to provide further information on his comments given in a lengthy interview with L'Equipe last week. Speaking to the French sports newspaper, he said: "I try to be faithful to the values that I believe to be important in life and to pass them on to others.

"In 30 years as a manager I've never had my players injected to make them better. I never gave them any product that would help enhance their performance. I'm proud of that. I've played against many teams that weren't in that frame of mind."

He added: "I hope England is immune from doping but I don't know."