Alloa Athletic manager Barry Ferguson has responded to Celtic striker Giorgios Giakoumakis claims surrounding the physicality of his side during the Scottish Cup fourth-round tie between the two sides on Saturday.
Ange Postecoglou’s side lost three separate first-team players due to injury, with Yosuke Ideguchi being the most highlighted of the three after being on the end of a nasty challenge by Alloa midfielder Mouhamed Niang.
Speaking to the media after the game, Giakoumakis was clearly left unimpressed with the Scottish League One sides physicality in the game, stating ‘it was too dangerous’ (Read More).
This evening, former Rangers midfielder and current Wasps boss Ferguson has responded to those claims insisting that his players would never go out their way to injure the opposition they come up against.
“First and foremost, I was disappointed to read that,” he said on the Go Radio Football Show.
“One thing about my players is they’re 100 per cent committed; they don’t go out to try and hurt fellow professionals.
“I asked them before the game to be aggressive and get in Celtic’s faces and try to make it as uncomfortable as possible for them, but in terms of going out to try and hurt players, that’s not in my make-up.
“If I thought any of my players were up to no good, they wouldn’t be playing in my time.
“So, I’m a bit disappointed to read those comments from Giakoumakis.
“But listen, overall, it was a good day for us as a team in terms of the quality Celtic have got.”
Although I probably wouldn’t look too much into the claims that anyone within Alloa went out with a game plan to injure Ange Postecoglou’s Celtic squad, some of the tackles put in on Saturday were extremely poor.
It doesn’t come as a surprise to hear Ferguson defending his players, with other managers likely to do the same.
However, reading Giakoumakis’ comments in the aftermath of the game, I don’t think the Greek striker said much wrong in his assessment, and some of the challenges were out of line.
Yes bazza, you get what you promise in this world of football. Kick below the knee and above the shin, type training teaches nobody anything. But such tactics exist. Also try not to get booked on your first tackle then mount up the pain on other players, and take your yellow with pride.
Still not a good thing to instal on any professional, unless of course your a prostitute.
So he didn’t instruct his players to deliberately hurt their opponents but asked them “to be aggressive and get in Celtic’s faces and try to make it as uncomfortable as possible for them”.
Who could ever have predicted that the team currently 8th in League One, 30th of 42 professional clubs in the country, would find fail to find the subtle nuance in his team orders and resort to clogging and injuring everything that moved, merely days from the forthcoming match against his favourite, former-ish outfit?