Whelan in the clear
Stoke’s Glenn Whelan will not face retrospective action from the Football Association over his two-footed challenge on Manchester City’s Javi García.
Referee Howard Webb took no action at the time and the FA has said the laws of the game rule it can only take action retrospectively for incidents not seen by match officials.
The Stoke midfielder has defended his challenge.
He told reporters: “I’ve gone in for the challenge and I don’t think I tried to be dirty but if it looks that way on TV then I’ll have to hold my hands up. I don’t think I caught him as much as he was rolling about.
“It’s the English game, the old-fashioned game, and that’s what the Premier League is so good for.
“There is massive pressure on the referees from the media and the people they’re accountable to. Hopefully it [tackling] can stay in the game and people just get on with it.”
City midfielder Gareth Barry had hinted that he thought action might be possible, suggesting Webb's view of the challenge may have been impeded by Garcia.
“I think the referee said at the time – I spoke to him and he said he didn’t have the right angle on it but Javi, in the changing room, said the player went in with both feet and caught his ankle so I think they showed that on TV too,” the England midfielder said.
“But I don’t want to speak badly against Glenn Whelan. He’s a great pro and I’m sure he went for the ball.”
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