Football: Bruce Wins Gold Backing as Blues Start Battle to Clear Woodhouse's Name

Article excerpt

Byline: Michael Ward

Birmingham City chairman David Gold last night joined manager Steve Bruce in urging the Football Association's video review panel to rescind the red card shown to midfielder Curtis Woodhouse in the hot-blooded encounter at Millwall on Thursday night.

He had been on the pitch a mere three minutes as a second-half substitute at the New Den when he was controversially sent off for achallenge on full-back Matt Lawrence.

Bruce, having studied film footage of the incident at great length, angrily accused referee Phil Dowd of bungling his decision and demanded that he reconsider it.

Gold fully agreed with his manager last night, and confirmed that Blues would make every effort to persuade the Football Association to cancel the red card.

'When the referee blew his whistle, my first reaction was: 'hang on, that wasn't even a foul',' Gold said. 'If the Millwall player had gone to ground like that away fromhome, he would have been booed for it and deservedly so.

'We all know where the malicious tackles come from. They come from a player who has just received an almighty whack from an opponent, and he wants revenge. They come from a player whose team is 4-0 down and humiltiated, and he wants to take it out on someone.

'I don't see a malicious tackle coming from a player who has been on the pitch for three minutes, when his team are 1-0 up.

'Anyone with half a brain could have seen that there was no element of revenge or malice inWoodhouse's tackle. At the very worst, it might have warranted a yellow card for over-exuberance. …