The physical nature of the English game is a help not a hindrance to foreign players, according to Arsène Wenger.
The rough and tumble of the Premier League is back on the agenda after West Ham striker Andy Carroll clashed with Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea on Wednesday, a day after an intense 0-0 draw between Arsenal and Everton.
Tackles were flying in at Emirates Stadium on Tuesday but Wenger thinks the physical aspect of English football made some of his most famous imports even better - including Dennis Bergkamp, Robert Pires and Marc Overmars.
I've seen so many French players complain about the physicality when they arrived in England. I tell them it will take some time but the intensity of the game will make them better players
"I don't think it holds players back," said Wenger. "In fact, the opposite, the foreign players who come to England improve and you get that aspect of the game as well.
"I've seen so many French players complain about the physicality when they arrived in England. I tell them it will take some time but the intensity of the game will make them better players.
"It was worse 15 years ago than it is now. Fifteen years ago no-one would have spoken about the Carroll challenge [on De Gea]. Now everything is analysed on TV. Some players complained and then, after they moved away, they missed the English game.
"When you look at some players, you cannot say the physicality of the game stops them from displaying their talent. When I brought Pires here he was not an especially physical player but no-one could stop him from playing his game.
"Overmars, Bergkamp, nobody could stop them. You cannot say it's physical or it's kicking, it's just that the commitment is high and that's what you want."
But when that commitment spills over into something more dangerous, it's a different matter.
"What I regret is when it goes overboard and we lost some players like Eduardo and Diaby, who paid a high price for that aspect," said Wenger.
"It is a fine line, that's why I say it is the intention that counts. If you go a little bit over the ball how can you tell if the guy did it on purpose or not? It's very difficult."Copyright 2013 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 19 Apr 2013