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Page last updated at 10:58 GMT, Friday, 2 April 2010 11:58 UK

West Ham complain over Fulham team selection for Hull

Craig Fagan scored Hull's second goal on Saturday
Craig Fagan scored Hull's second goal on Saturday

The Premier League have confirmed they have received a complaint from West Ham over Fulham's decision to rest players for last Saturday's match against Hull.

Fulham left out Bobby Zamora, Danny Murphy, Aaron Hughes, Dickson Etuhu and Damien Duff for a game they lost 2-0.

Manager Roy Hodgson made the decision with one eye on Thursday's Europa League match with Wolfsburg and said Fulham "have no case to answer".

West Ham manager Gianfranco Zola said that he had no issue with Hodgson.

"As far as I am concerned, a manager can play his best team," he said.

"I have no doubts that Roy Hodgson is doing the best for his team and he is a person that I respect for his loyalty and I have no complaints with that.

"He decided to do that and I'm sure he has done the right thing for his club."

Hull are in the final relegation spot, level on points with West Ham but Hodgson defended his club's actions

"Firstly I do not think West Ham should be picking our team and I think that is a fairly obvious statement," he said.

Dowie brushes off West Ham complaints

"My conscience is perfectly clear on the subject and we do not have a case to answer.

"We chose a team comprising a player just sold for £10m [Chris Smalling] and a South African international [Kagisho Dikgacoi], and replaced Bobby Zamora with Clint Dempsey, a United States international.

"I can't understand why, if you have a large squad, it's not allowed for you to change things around. I can't imagine anyone questioning Liverpool, Manchester United or Chelsea for using all the players in their squad."

And Hodgson has found support from Wigan boss Roberto Martinez, who described West Ham's action as "foolish".

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"As a manager you always make decisions that can help your team," said Martinez.

"Roy Hodgson and Fulham have had such a successful season, they know exactly what they have got behind the scenes and know what they need.

"For anyone to criticise another football club when they are in such outstanding form is very foolish.

"Roy Hodgson has got to make the decisions to help his team achieve their aims for the season."

Zola 'has no complaints' with Fulham selection

A Premier League spokesman added: "We can confirm that we have received an official complaint from West Ham over this matter.

"We will now ask Fulham for their observations and then the Premier League board will then consider what actions, if any, are appropriate."

This is not the first time this season that a team selection has caused a row in the Premier League.

Hodgson defends decision to rest players last weekend

In February, Wolves were handed a £25,000 suspended Premier League fine for fielding a weakened team in their 3-0 December defeat at Manchester United.

Wolves manager Mick McCarthy made 10 changes to the side as he rested key players ahead of the game against Burnley, which Wolves won 2-0.

Nine players were recalled to face the Clarets.

The Premier League's E20 rule stipulates that clubs must field a full-strength side in all top-flight games.

And it is understood that the Premier League is only likely to enforce that regulation if wholesale changes are made.



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see also
Fulham 2-1 Wolfsburg
01 Apr 10 |  Europe
Hull 2-0 Fulham
27 Mar 10 |  Premier League
Wolves fined over team selection
18 Feb 10 |  Wolves
Wolves surprised by row over team
22 Dec 09 |  Wolves


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