Stoke news

Begovic praises composed Shawcross

December 17, 2012
By David Instone

Asmir Begovic has praised the restraint of his skipper Ryan Shawcross in the face of the extraordinary flashpoint incidents that seem certain to land Marouane Fellaini with a lengthy ban.

Ryan Shawcross woe
PA PhotosRyan Shawcross' own goal handed Everton a first-half lead

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Fellaini, 25, can expect to hear from the FA this week and find himself having to explain his head-butt on the Stoke City skipper in Everton's draw at the Britannia Stadium on Saturday.

Other offences by Fellaini against Shawcross also went undetected by the officials, much to the surprise of Begovic.

"Obviously it's there for everyone to see," he said. "I'm not going to comment on it much more. I don't want to get into any trouble. I think the right people will take a look at it and decide what to do.

"There were a lot of missed or strange calls. It was a little bit of a frustrating game in that sense. It's tough but the refs have a tough job like anybody. Sometimes these things go unnoticed and hopefully they can get help from the authorities to make the right decision in the end.

"Ryan has got good composure. Sometimes it's easy to retaliate but then he would have only hurt himself. He has done really well to control himself."

Begovic was somewhat remorseful following his own reaction to the frequent commotion in front of him. He raced from his line in the second half to complain to referee Mark Halsey and was booked for his troubles.

"I was a little bit unhappy with what was going on with me, and the holding and the shirt-pulling and everything else that wasn't really being dealt with," Begovic said. I made my point clear and I probably deserved a booking. I should have gone about it in a better manner but in the heat of the game sometimes that happens. That's the way it goes.

"Everton probably expected to come here and win. The run they've been on, their position in the table, the ambitions they have...they wanted to win here and we made it very difficult for them.

"Thankfully we got a point out of it as well, which is important. We like to compete. I don't think it's anything dirty to our game.

"We're a good strong side and that's all there is to it. People know they have to come here and compete with us, and sometimes they can go a little bit overboard, which is unfortunate. But there was nothing wrong with the game in general."

Ironically, Begovic - rumoured to be interesting Manchester United - was beaten only by a Shawcross header in a 1-1 draw that extended the unbeaten Stoke home record that stretches back to February.

"Nine times out of ten, that ball probably goes the other side of the crossbar but today it wasn't meant to be," he said. "Ryan's been fantastic to bounce back from that little disappointment and that shows the character he has. We move on."