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THE managers’ union is pleading for cool heads following Chris Coleman’s flare-up over referee Rob Styles last night.

Fulham boss Coleman had to be held back after Styles’ cock-up gave Middlesbrough a last-minute penalty equaliser.

But John Barnwell, chief executive of the League Managers’ Association, said: “He is not the first manager to do that, and he won’t be the last.

“It is an emotive game and there has to be consideration of that

“I have looked through it, and when I saw Chris go on the pitch I thought ‘Oh, no, don’t confront the referee’ because if you do confront the referee then he has to make a response.

“Thankfully he was either restrained or he listened, turned round and marched off the pitch.

“And, from the video evidence I saw, he did not have a verbal confrontation with Rob Styles.

“I think it is just an emotive situation, which has thankfully not boiled right over.

“It is understandable, these things do occur, and you would hope that common sense would prevail.”

Barnwell believes Styles will not call on the FA to investigate Coleman.

He added: “I can’t see that Rob Styles will make any report of it.

“Styles and the other officials quite rightly stayed in the middle of the pitch, the stewards were in front of him and Coleman never got within 30 yards of him.

“The game had finished, Coleman had time to have more thoughts, he corrected himself, people got around him who ushered him off.”

Barnwell refused to debate Styles’ spot-kick decision, although TV replays showed keeper Edwin van der Sar fouled Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink outside the area.

The bosses’ chief said: “Everybody understands it is emotive and the decision, whether it is right or wrong, is opinion. We are not going to get involved in that.”

But Coleman himself is relieved Fulham colleagues restrained him at the final whistle.

He said: “I walked on to the pitch – I should not have done that – and I got held back by a few people. So I never really got a chance to say what I wanted to say to him really, or his assistant. I am glad I was because in the heat of the moment, there is a lot of emotion involved, maybe I would have said things I would have regretted afterwards, but I was restrained.”