Football

Walker admits pushing Sterling, who was through on goal

Tottenham Hotspur defender Kyle Walker admitted pushing Raheem Sterling, while the Manchester City forward was shaping to shoot during their clash yesterday morning (Singapore time).

That incident happened in the 76th minute, with a dominant City holding on to a 2-1 lead.

Sterling was clean through but Walker's shove in the back destabilised him. Sterling opted to continue his run, but produced a timid effort on goal.

Walker could have been sent off for that. A furious City manager Pep Guardiola demanded a penalty, but the appeals were turned down by referee Andre Marriner.

That proved to be a pivotal point as Spurs levelled the score a minute later through Son Heung Min.

Claiming responsibility for the foul, Walker told the BBC: "I wasn't going to get (the ball) otherwise. You have to put (Sterling) off as much as possible.

"Hugo pulled off the save and I think we got the draw we deserved."

Guardiola said his team's wastefulness had been the main reason for their undoing, but suggested he would ask referees' chief Mike Riley for clarification on the rules.

"The rules here are the rules so maybe Mike Riley one day is going to explain to me when it's a push here or here or here," he said. "Still I don't understand."

When told that Walker admitted pushing Sterling, Guardiola said, with a hint of sarcasm: "What did Walker say? He say he push him. Okay, thank you Walker for being honest.

"I know this country people like being honest. So I appreciate."

The incident prompted former EPL referee and BT Sport pundit Howard Webb to call for video technology to help in refereeing decisions.

"You will see the push incident on Sterling and see that it should have been a penalty and red card," Webb said.

"But trying to put myself in his (Marriner's) shoes, it was a quick break and he was some distance away.

REF DIDN'T SEE IT?

"He's probably not expecting a push from Kyle Walker, he's expecting a trip or last-ditch tackle. Maybe he doesn't really see from behind? The assistant should see it.

"Then he's got to make a judgment - how much has that impacted on Sterling?

"Maybe again, it's another case for some form of technology to come in so we can go back to Andre in that situation and say 'Stop the game, that's a penalty and a red card'.

"The video referee would have come back and said, 'Give the penalty, send him off' and Man City go on at 3-1." - WIRE SERVICES

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