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Rediff.com  » Sports » Carroll controversially sent off as West Ham thump Swansea

Carroll controversially sent off as West Ham thump Swansea

February 01, 2014 23:37 IST

Andy Carroll was controversially sent off after appearing to strike Chico Flores during West Ham's 2-0 win against a lacklustre Swansea City in the Premier League on Saturday.

Carroll and Chico tangled in an aerial challenge in the 59th minute at the Boleyn Ground. Upon landing, Carroll caught the Swansea defender across the head with his arm.

The contact was minimal but an exaggerated reaction from Chico prompted referee Howard Webb to show a straight red card.

"I don't think you can say it's ridiculous. It's the reaction of player that makes life extremely difficult for the referee. He was squealing and centre halves are not supposed to squeal," West Ham manger Sam Allardyce told reporters.

"It's harsh but I understand why it was given because the referee must have thought his arm smashed him in the face. But fortunately it has not cost us anything."

In their meeting earlier in the season at the Liberty Stadium, Chico rolled around dramatically in a similar manner following a tackle with Carlton Cole, an incident that drew a reaction from Allardyce that day too.

West Ham confirmed they plan to appeal the decision.

"Andy is gutted, he's beside himself but we've just got to go through the appeal process and see what happens," Allardyce said.

Swansea boss Michael Laudrup echoed his counterpart's sentiments regarding the dismissal.

JUDGE PLAYERS

"I thought it was harsh. There are challenges like that every game. For me there's contact but the referee is a very good international and he must've seen the elbow and decided it was on purpose," Laudrup said.

"Maybe (Chico) did make too much of it. I'm not sure if he wanted him sent off, I would have to talk to him. I'm not going to judge players."

Until the red card, Carroll had been a handful and was instrumental in both goals.

He teed up captain Kevin Nolan to rifle home midway through the first half before the same two players combined in much the same fashion with Nolan again finishing from a Carroll header in the shadows of halftime.

"He has the ability to hold ball and the aerial problems he causes is his major strength. Today he made two for Kevin and next week we need him to make another two and get one himself," Allardyce said.

"We've had 11 clean sheets so that's the basis of a solid team and that gives us the platform to win more football games."

The win failed to lift the Hammers out of the relegation zone after other results went against them.

Swansea have won just one of their previous 10 league matches and are 12th with 24 points. With just six points separating the bottom 10 teams, Laudrup refused to get drawn into suggestions that Swansea are already embroiled in a relegation battle.

"There are about 11 teams (who could be involved in a relegation battle) so we'll see what happens over the next four or five games. We cannot go up or down because of one result," he said.

"There will be changes from matchday to matchday."

Image: Andy Carroll

Photograph: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images