Premier League – Managers: Pulis ‘disappointed’ by Fuller

Managerial reaction from the Premier League as Stoke manager Tony Pulis found himself unable to defend the actions of his “volatile” striker Ricardo Fuller which led to the Jamaican’s red card at West Ham.

FOOTBALL 2008/09 Premier League Ricardo Fuller is restrained by Stoke team-mates after hitting Andy Griffin - 0

West Ham 2-1 Stoke City

Gianfranco Zola: “It was very difficult because confidence here at our ground was low and we went down after a few minutes against a team notoriously difficult to break down. This is a big, big turning point for us. The crowd was a bit nervous but after the early goal they reacted perfectly. We had six or seven chances to score and at half-time I told them we were going to win if we kept playing like this.”

Tony Pulis: “There’s no condoning what [Ricardo Fuller’s] done. He’s walked up to Griff [Andy Griffin] and clipped him on the chin and it’s disappointing. I’ll talk to them both and deal with it on Monday. Ric is a volatile player and a volatile person and what he’s done will be dealt with. The pair get on well together but I’ve said to the lads we’ll have a meeting on Monday to sort it out. There are always incidents on the pitch and in training. The game is passionate and it’s nothing I haven’t seen before. Ric was already on the bus when we came in and he’s very disappointed with what he did and his reaction.”

Newcastle United 1-5 Liverpool

Joe Kinnear: “We need to draw a line under it, we need to get [club owner Mike Ashley] back on board and we need to sit down and discuss the future of the club first and foremost, and the strength of the team and what direction we are going in. Now he has drawn a line under that and made that statement, it’s the next statement that’s going to be the most important one, and that is (a) the future of the club and (b) more players. More players is a must at the moment, a must. We just need to get players in to strengthen the squad to make sure we stay in the league first and foremost.”

Sammy Lee: “All I will say to you is we feel this is a very strong, very focused, very determined bunch of players, and the joy from my point of view is that they are all willing to work hard and improve on their game. That as a coach and a manager is all you can ask from players. We have got a belief. It’s not an arrogance – hopefully it doesn’t sound conceited, but we prepare to succeed, we don’t prepare to fail. These lads are working very, very hard to make sure they get out the game what we feel as a club they deserve. But over the course of the season, only time will tell.”

Fulham 2-2 Chelsea

Roy Hodgson: “It was a fantastic fighting effort. Over 90 minutes Chelsea were the better footballing team, but we matched them in so many departments. In the second half Chelsea played really well and deserved to go 2-1 up. But credit to our players, they didn’t lose their heads and they managed to score a wonderful late equaliser.”

Luiz Felipe Scolari: “We had six, seven, eight chances to score and got two. They had two, from free-kicks, and scored twice. We had more possession, but we made two dangerous mistakes in our box and because of that we’ve lost two points, it really was just incredible. But we’re in a good position, we just need to win games, nothing more.”

West Bromwich Albion 2-0 Tottenham Hotspur

Tony Mowbray: “I have no comment on the referee. Some games as a coach you sit there and have thoughts but I’ve not been as brave as Harry and said anything. I think we all abide by the officials. We agree with some decisions, we don’t agree with others. Some of them are crucial decisions and some are niggly little fouls. The bottom line is you hope to get the big ones right. I was very surprised when a red card was given but the referee saw it was and you have to live with that. If I thought there was a push [by Roman Bednar on Michael Dawson for the opening goal] I would be sitting here saying I thought we got away with it today but I didn’t see any pushes.”

Harry Redknapp: “I couldn’t even put into words what I thought of his [referee Steve Tanner] performance. When I walked into the referees’ room before the game and saw who was reffing the game I knew what was coming. I expected that and it didn’t surprise me at all. I’ve had him many times before and I know what he is like – he really isn’t good enough. He is just a poor referee unfortunately and I’ve seen him make a mess of so many games before. I saw him when I was in the Championship and I thought to myself then ‘Where has he come from?’. I never walk in after game and complain about a referee but this guy today is scary. What can you do? Someone thinks he is good enough but he is definitely not.”

Arsenal 1-0 Portsmouth

Arsene Wenger: “We were lacking a bit of zip because we gave a lot at Aston Villa in our last match. It was important that we were intelligent and patient. Portsmouth played very well and they were well organised and defended very deep. My team is maturing quite well, and quickly. We will fight for the title and we believe we have a chance.”

Tony Adams:David James made a great save from a one-on-one, just before Arsenal’s goal, that kept us in the game. He is a magnificent goalkeeper and I don’t have a bad word to say about him. I am very proud of my players – they worked their socks off. The players are certainly fighting for me, but we are just not getting the results.”

Everton 3-0 Sunderland

Steve Round: “The boys were fantastic. There was real energy, confidence and desire about that performance and it is great victory at home for our supporters. There is a magnificent team spirit and togetherness running right through the squad here. When young Dan Gosling came into the dressing room he got a standing ovation for scoring his first goal for the club. They work incredibly hard in training every day and they don’t fear anyone. They go out and give it their best shot every time.”

Ricky Sbragia: “In general we were second best all over the pitch. Everton were exceptional and we were a yard short. We said not to give anything away around the box, but we did that twice and were quickly two goals down – that made an extremely difficult afternoon even more difficult. The transfer window is coming up and we have earmarked a couple. We can also get Michael Chopra back from his loan spell at Cardiff so that will give us an extra body.”

Bolton Wanderers 0-1 Wigan Athletic

Gary Megson: “You try to be objective as you can but we think the ball was over the line. We had what we thought was a legitimate goal turned down but we did not play particularly well. A lot of our well-known players did not perform. The best display came from Danny Shittu in terms of defending. Maybe tiredness set in during the last 20 minutes but we have to give credit to the opposition as they were really solid.”

Steve Bruce: “Anyone who has seen us will know it is no fluke we are in the top half of the division. Our aim is to stay there if we can. There a lot of big clubs down near the bottom so it is great for a side like ours to be punching above our weight. Bolton have done it [played in the UEFA Cup], Blackburn have done it. Why can’t it be our turn?. In the calendar year we have taken something like 58-60 points. It is a fantastic achievement from the players but we are not going to get carried away.”

Blackburn Rovers 2-2 Manchester City

Sam Allardyce: “We’ve thrown four points away in last two games. We should have won both so that is massive given the position we are in. We are still in the bottom three and that is the big problem that we have. He added: “It was a terrific performance, committed and a superb game but at 2-0 I thought we would see it out.”

Mark Hughes: “Hopefully we can now get a little spark to move on. You know when you play Sam’s teams they are going to fight and scrap. But in the end we got out of it because we showed great character.”