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Page last updated at 15:44 GMT, Wednesday, 24 September 2008 16:44 UK

Pogatetz issues Possebon apology

Emanuel Pogatetz
Pogatetz was dismissed for a challenge on Rodrigo Possebon

Middlesbrough defender Emanuel Pogatetz has apologised to Rodrigo Possebon for the tackle in Tuesday's 3-1 Carling Cup defeat by Manchester United.

The Boro captain was sent off for a wild lunge at the young United midfielder and admitted the challenge merited his dismissal.

"I know the referee was right to send me off," he told BBC Tees.

"I am going to speak to Rodrigo by telephone and I have apologised for hurting him."

The 25-year-old Austrian international added: "I went for the tackle because I thought I could win the ball.


"I hope that he will make a quick recovery and that he will not be out for long."

Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate admitted the defender deserved his red card and conceded referee Andre Marriner made the right decision.

"You support your players where you can but you can't defend a tackle like that," he told BBC Tees.

"It's not a good tackle, unfortunately there's nothing we can do about it."

Initial fears were that Brazilian teenager Possebon had broken his leg in the tackle but reports on the United website have confirmed that is not the case.

It is not the first occasion in which the 25-year-old has been involved in an incident following a challenge on an opposing player.

Pogatetz was banned from football for six months in 2005 while playing for Spartak Moscow after a challenge on Yaroslav Kharitonskiy left the Russian midfielder with a double leg fracture.

And Southgate admitted his disappointment at the nature of the challenge from a player who has worked hard to rebuild his reputation as a fair player.

"He knows as the captain he's got a responsibility," he said.

"He's a committed player and his disciplinary record has improved immensely, but that was a poor tackle."

see also
Pogatetz tackle enrages Ferguson
24 Sep 08 |  Man Utd
Man Utd 3-1 Middlesbrough
23 Sep 08 |  League Cup
Pogatetz ban cut to eight weeks
24 Aug 05 |  Middlesbrough

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