Shawcross defends Henry and De Jong

07 October 2010 03:30
Stoke captain Ryan Shawcross claims some of the criticism being levelled at Karl Henry and Nigel de Jong is unfair and that the potential for serious injuries to occur is just part and parcel of modern football. Wolves skipper Henry was shown a red card on Saturday for a sliding tackle that sent Wigan's Jordi Gomez into a cartwheel, and a challenge from City midfielder De Jong the next day left Newcastle's Hatem Ben Arfa with a broken leg. In each case the tackler has been widely vilified, with Henry - who was also involved in the collision earlier this season which saw Fulham striker Bobby Zamora break his leg - publicly apologising for the Gomez challenge and De Jong being left out of Bert van Marwijk's Holland squad for the Euro 2012 qualifiers against Moldova and Sweden. In February Shawcross found himself in the spotlight having made a tackle that fractured Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey's leg, and the Potters centre-back insists the speed of the game means that some challenges will inevitably be mis-timed. Asked if he felt the criticism of players like Henry and De Jong was too harsh, Shawcross told Press Association Sport: "Yes, sometimes it is. As a player, the likes of Henry and De Jong I'm sure didn't go out to injure another player on purpose. "It's part and parcel of football - they are tough-tackling central midfielders whose games are based on making tackles, winning the ball and then giving it to the ball-players. Sometimes injuries are caused. You have just got to accept in these times, with the ball moving so fast and the player moving so fast, sometimes you are going to mis-time tackles and that is when injuries can happen."

Source: PA