Roy Hodgson has hit out at UEFA after they refused to allow Fulham to replace the injured David Stockdale with Pascal Zuberbuhler in their European squad and had to play last night’s game against FC Basel without a substitute goalkeeper on the bench.
Stockdale picked up an injury in training this week – unfortunately as he was just beginning to establish himself as Schwarzer’s number two – but UEFA ruled that it wasn’t serious injury to warrant an emergency replacement under regulation 18.20 of their rules govering the Europa League. Hodgson was far from happy.
UEFA refused our request to replace the injured Stockdale with Zuberbuhler on the basis they didn’t think the injury was sufficiently long term. It’s a decision we dispute. We think the game would be denigrated if an outfield player was in goal because your keeper became injured.
It’s a decision we dispute. We think the game would be denigrated if an outfield player was in goal because your keeper became injured. UEFA want to make the league stronger and more prestigious so I don’t understand this decision. We protested and appealed but they stuck firm by their decision.
With any luck Stockdale will be fit for the next game against Roma but there’s no guarantee. If he isn’t we could be in the same situation again.
It seems Zoltan Gera was keen on assuming goalkeeping duties should Schwarzer have been forced off.
In the mean time we must thank our lucky stars Schwarzer wasn’t injured and Zoltan Gera didn’t have to put the gloves on, which he was looking forward to but I wasn’t.
Hodgson was delighted to pick up a useful home win against an impressive Basel side.
Basle were good, as any team who can beat Roma 2-0 would be. They have a good pedigree in Europe. They might not be a name that is very familiar to English fans but they are a very good team and showed that tonight.
But I was pleased with the way we dug in and stuck to our task. We got some passing going in the second half and that led to our goal. We thought we had a stonewall penalty in the first half. I found it hard to believe we weren’t given that one. The one in the second half was more debatable as there may have been a slight touch on the ball.