Date: 5th February 2012 at 7:53pm
Written by:

Alex McLeish has said he substituted Stephen Ireland because he had an ankle problem, and not, as has been reported because he told him to ‘eff off’.

Speaking to the Official Site McLeish said.

‘Stevie had an ankle problem and wasn’t able to close down. Guthrie sidestepped him to put the cross in, I thought it was too easy and Stevie should have been making that tackle or at least putting a block on the cross. It was clear at half time that he didn’t have the capacity to get close to people.’

Curiously he then adds.

‘His touch was still great at certain moments. But at this level in the Premier League you need players with legs and energy.’

Which is why he regularly subs players who have run out of puff I presume.

To the Birmingham Mail he said.

‘I know he spoke back, but at the same time, players don’t like to hear the manager screaming at them from the touchline. But I kick every ball with them, I am passionate, I care and I wouldn’t be so petty to take a player off for something like that if he is doing a fantastic job.’

McLeish also comments on the substitution of N’Zogbia.

‘With Charles I just felt that Obertans was getting on the ball too easily and was able to run hat the back four without any doubling up. I felt Charles was just isolating Warnock a little bit. I needed the gap filled because Newcastle were able to get out there.’

So he brings Heskey on.

All good stuff isn’t it.

Vital Villa on: facebook

Vital Villa on: twitter

Join Vital Villa

It’s easy to REGISTER, simply click the link and enjoy getting involved!