Football News

Wigan owner defends McManaman challenge

Created on 19 Mar., 2013 10:22 PM GMT

Wigan owner Dave Whelan has defended the challenge made by Callum McManaman which saw Newcastle's Massadio Haidara hospitalised.

The incident, which saw the left-back stretchered from the pitch with what is feared to be a serious knee ligament injury, went unpunished by referee Mark Halsey and his match officials.

With Latics boss Roberto Martinez admitting after the game that it was a poor challenge before defending McManaman's character, Whelan has gone even further with his take on the controversial matter.

"Young McManaman went in for the ball and got the ball, as clean as a whistle, then followed through and they collided," the Wigan supremo told BBC Radio 5 Live.

"The referee was 15 yards from the tackle and I don't think his view was blocked.  (Halsey) had a clear view and I had a clear view in the stands.

"He hasn't gone over the ball and that's an accident. There is not one ounce of malice in (him) and he was very upset by it all."

Wigan went on to beat Newcastle 2-1 courtesy of a controversial late winner from Arouna Kone as they bid to preserve their top-flight status for another year.

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