Arsène Wenger believes football has a responsibility to fight homophobia and has strongly backed this weekend’s Rainbow Laces campaign.

Arsenal players will lace their boots with rainbow colours when they face Manchester City at Emirates Stadium on Saturday, showing their support to help end discrimination in the sport.

Mikel Arteta, Santi Cazorla, Olivier Giroud, Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain and Theo Walcott also appeared in a television advert, but Wenger feels more work can be done to kick prejudice out of the game.

The fight against homophobia and any discrimination is very important and we have that responsibility

Arsène Wenger

“The sport is taking responsibility so perhaps our sport can be ahead of the trend in society,” he said. “In this aspect I don’t think we are but at least we support it and I think it’s important.

“I believe that we have a responsibility because people look at our game and see what kind of values we support. The fight against homophobia and any discrimination is very important and we have that responsibility.

“In some values, we are in front of normal society [and] with some we are a bit behind compared to what is the trend of society. This is one where maybe we are a bit behind and we have to work on it, of course.

“Any discrimination I'm completely against. [Should women] train football teams, I'm for [that happening], if they are good enough. For me the only thing that is important is competence.”

Copyright 2016 The Arsenal Football Club plc. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit being given to www.arsenal.com as the source
Max Jones 11 Sep 2014