Emma Hayes recites poetry in reply to ‘irresponsible’ call from Jonas Eidevall

By Sports Desk April 12, 2024 123

Emma Hayes bizarrely recited part of a poem after Jonas Eidevall branded her accusation against him of male aggression “irresponsible”.

Eidevall’s Arsenal defeated Hayes’ Chelsea 1-0 earlier this month in the Continental Cup final but the result was overshadowed by a spat between the two managers.

Hayes took exception to a touchline altercation between Eidevall and Chelsea’s Erin Cuthbert and appeared to push the Arsenal boss after the match.

Both managers were speaking for the first time since the contest ahead of matches this weekend, and Eidevall did not hold back in criticising Hayes for her remarks.

“I thought the comments that I heard after the game were very irresponsible and they were not mirroring the conduct that I had in the technical area,” Eidevall said on arsenal.com.

“I think always when you make comments about other persons, you have to take into consideration what effects that may have. That’s why you need to be, especially when you’re a leader, you need to be very good with words.

“You need to understand the consequences of both your actions and your language and that’s why I think it’s really, really important that we treat each other with a lot of respect and that we stay at facts as much as possible and don’t get too emotional.”

Hayes’ response – when asked whether she would change her comments – was to read a line from Robert Frost’s poem Choose Something Like a Star: “When at times the mob is swayed to carry praise or blame too far, we may choose something like a star, to stay our minds on and be staid.”

Neither manager offered an apology, with Eidevall saying he was “very happy” with the way he conducted himself, while Hayes described a conversation with her young son about responding to aggression.

“My son said to me after the game, ‘Mummy, when you push someone in school you’re asked to go and take time out’,” she told reporters.

“And I said to him, ‘You know what darling, you can’t meet aggression with aggression. All you can do is tell the teacher’. I thought it was a really good conversation to have with my son.”

Pressed further, Hayes indicated she regretted her reaction, saying: “I’ve had a fantastic break, I’ve already explained an important analogy that I shared with my son and the lessons learned and my focus is on moving forward and I’ve had time to look at my star.

“Of course it’s not right to meet aggression with aggression. I can only control my own behaviours.

“I’ve reflected on that and next time I just need to listen to my son’s advice and I need to go to the teacher if I’ve got anything to say.”

On Eidevall’s branding of her as “irresponsible”, Hayes said simply: “I don’t have an opinion on it.”

There appears no prospect of clear-the-air talks between the pair any time soon, with Hayes, who will not face any sanction for the push, adding: “We don’t play Arsenal, we don’t have each other’s telephone numbers, we’d have no reason to do that.

“But I’m sure when I become the boss of the USA we will have conversations. Until the end of the season, my focus is on Chelsea.”

Eidevall revealed, meanwhile, that Frida Maanum, who collapsed during the cup final in worrying scenes, could return in next weekend’s match against Leicester.

“Everything is looking good and that’s the most important thing,” said Eidevall. “She’s on a graduated, monitored protocol now to return to play.

“She will not be available for selection (against Bristol City) on Sunday but, after that, if everything goes as planned, it looks promising for her to be available to play again.”

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Last modified on Friday, 12 April 2024 12:22
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