Arsène Wenger insists Olivier Giroud’s red card against Fulham was harsh and the challenge was “completely accidental”.

The France international will miss the next three games after the Club’s appeal against his ban for a challenge on Stanislav Manolev was dismissed.

Giroud was adjudged to have gone over the top of the ball, but Wenger believes he slipped as he went in to tackle the Fulham defender.

“It is a blow that we cannot have him available,” the manager told Arsenal Player. “We will have to do without him and we will do it.

“It's a harsh decision. After the game, I was a little bit less convinced that he didn't deserve the red card but having seen it again, I feel it's completely accidental and a very minor incident.

“That's why I decided to appeal. I'm sad that it didn't work but we have to cope with it.”

Wenger insists there was never any concern that the Football Association would view the Club’s appeal as frivolous and increase the ban.

“You weigh that up but honestly nobody could accuse you of a frivolous appeal when you see what happened again,” he said.

“I thought 'frivolous appeal, no - but will they overturn the red card?’ For me that was 50-50. But we were never in doubt of it being [seen as] a frivolous appeal.”

Copyright 2014 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 Rob Kelly 25 Apr 2013