Football

The ugly

Everton boss Roberto Martinez was far from happy with the award of the penalty which proved to be the difference between his side and Manchester City during a 0-1 loss at Eastlands yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Phil Jagielka was penalised for a foul on James Milner after 23 minutes but the decision by referee Andre Marriner was a questionable one.

Martinez said: "I am really disappointed about it. It is clear contact but contact is allowed. I don't think it is a penalty at all.

"James Milner's reaction tells you everything. He just gets up and tries to fight for the ball. He is not even asking for a free-kick.

"It is an action that happens a lot, two bodies fighting for the ball, a coming-together of two bodies.

"If Phil Jagielka had tried to win the ball and collided with James Milner's legs, that is always a penalty, but shoulder to shoulder is just part of the game and should never be given.

"It was a disappointing decision from such an experienced referee."

Martinez also felt City's Eliaquim Mangala and Fernando were fortunate to escape red cards for high challenges on Samuel Eto'o and Gareth Barry respectively. Both were booked.

Martinez said: "I don't like to see players sent off but, when you have got a referee that is going to give a penalty for two bodies coming together - so you are going to use the letter of the law - Mangala's challenge is a red card every single time.

"Fernando's challenge is a bit more unfortunate, but it is a high boot.

"But you learn you are going to get bad decisions and lucky decisions coming your way."

- Wire Services.