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Players like Ramsey need protecting - Wigan boss Martinez backs Wenger

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05 Mar 2010 14:16:50

Players like Ramsey need protecting - Wigan boss Martinez backs Wenger

Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has backed Arsene Wenger's call for football authorities to crack down on over-physical challenges.   Wenger branded the three-match ban given to Stoke's Ryan Shawcross as 'just ridiculous' after the defender was sent off for a tackle that left Aaron Ramsey with a broken leg in Arsenal's 3-1 victory at Stoke last weekend.   Birmingham's Liam Ridgewell was shown no card for a robust challenge on Latics midfielder James McCarthy the same day, and Martinez believes more should be done to encourage creativity and eradicate bad tackles.   Tough tackling: Martinez says creative players need more protection 'The hardest thing in football is to be constructive and creative,and to produce the kind of attractive play that everybody wants tosee,' Martinez told the Wigan Evening Post.  'It makes football what it is, and I agree that the referees shouldbe stronger and look to protect the flair players a little bit more.   'With those sorts of over-physical challenges, you have a lot to lose - and the rules should help the attacking players.   Rule change: Martinez backs Arsene Wenger 'A tackle does not have to be malicious to be dangerous. If it ismis-timed, you can still put someone's career on hold for nine months,which is a big price to pay.   'Paying the price of a broken leg because you are trying to be acreative player is too much of a risk. The rules should be a bitstricter.'   Martinez accepted that Shawcross showed no malice but questioned why he had gone in for the tackle with such force.  'At the time, I thought that it was a late, late tackle, but Ididn't think that it was malicious or that he was trying to hurt theplayer,' Martinez said.   'But in that area of the pitch, it was unnecessary. You couldunderstand if a player was the last man trying to save a goal or havean effect on the scoreline. But not when they are in an area wherethere is no real danger to the defensive team.   'Yes, we all want to see heart and desire in the game, but we cannotallow tackles like that which put players at big risk of injury. We allknow what players like Aaron Ramsey can do on the ball, and defendingis an art as well.   'But there is such a thin line when it comes to the physicality. Teams that are physical and hard to break down are perhaps being toosuccessful at the moment.'  Arsenal can with the Premier League! Sir Alex Ferguson says Gunners have easiest run-in Beckham and Gerrard lift Shawcross's spirits over Ramsey horror tackleWigan boss Roberto Martinez chasing Espanyol hitman Jose CallejonARSENAL FC


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