Thursday, January 19, 2017

Phelan has ´no qualms´ over another handball red card

SoccerNews in English Premier League 24 Sep 2016

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Hull City caretaker manager Mike Phelan agreed with the decision to send Ahmed Elmohamady off for deliberate handball in Saturday’s 5-1 defeat at Liverpool.

Liverpool already led through Adam Lallana when Elmohamady blocked Philippe Coutinho’s goal-bound shot with his arm.

James Milner converted the penalty to double the hosts’ advantage, before Sadio Mane added a third and Coutinho scored a brilliant fourth for the hosts.

Milner scored again from the spot to round off a comfortable home win and Phelan had “no qualms” with his side again having a player sent off for handball, following Jake Livermore’s red card for the same offence against Arsenal last weekend.

Phelan said at his post-match press conference: “It’s clear, the rule is there. If a direct shot on goal is on target and your arm is out and it hits you, it’s a sending-off and a penalty.

“There is possibly now a mentality suggests that if that is the case, let the ball go in the goal and stay on the field. That may be a mentality change players have to make, it’s an instinct though and players will do that.”

It was an unhappy 54th birthday for Phelan at Anfield, but the caretaker manager was impressed with the performance of Jurgen Klopp’s team.

“Liverpool are flying at the moment,” Phelan said. “You can see that their mentality is good and their work rate is up there with the best. I think they’re looking a very good team that has gelled together.

“It’s going to be difficult for any team to play against Liverpool in that mood, but it does help if you can play with 11 men.”

Phelan’s future remains unresolved, although he has an offer to become Hull’s manager on a permanent basis, but the former Manchester United assistant is waiting for assurances from the club’s owners after a failed takeover.

“My future is I’m 54 years old today and I’ve done alright,” Phelan said. “I have an offer to be the manager and I’m waiting for answers from the current owners.

“Everything is down to their decision making but I’m ready and willing and up to the challenge, the players are up for the challenge, and they’ve stressed they want me at the helm.”

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