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Boss: Red card was fair decision

20 October 2012

Clarke believes referee was right to dismiss Milner

STEVE Clarke believes referee Mark Clattenburg was correct to show James Milner a red card in today’s 2-1 defeat by Manchester City at The Hawthorns. 

The Tyne and Wear official dismissed the England midfielder in the 23rd-minute after his lunging tackle denied Shane Long a clear goalscoring opportunity with the game goalless. 

City may argue Joleon Lescott could have covered - but Clarke feels the right decision was made.

“I’ve watched a couple of the games Mark has refereed this year and he has produced a few cards,” said Clarke.

“I think the red card was the key card today.

“Shane’s touch has put him in a position to get his shot away and I don’t think Lescott would have got round on the cover.

“It was a marginal one and if the referee had not made that decision, I’d be disappointed. 

“But it went for me - and I’m still disappointed because we lost.”

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