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Shan: Cards hard to take.

Byline: PAUL SUART

JIMMY Shan couldn't help but feel aggrieved after West Brom fell on the wrong side of all the big decisions in their semi-final first leg defeat at Villa Park.

Shan took major issue with the two bookings that added up to a red card for top scorer Dwight Gayle.

Gayle collected his first caution for time-wasting, with the Baggies a goal to the good, and the second for colliding with goalkeeper Jed Steer in a determined bid to reach James Morrison's cross.

"No problem with me with the referee discussing that [time-wasting] with him and trying to hurry him up, but not once did Dwight stand still, every time he's walking to take the throw-in," said Shan.

"It's a new one on me if you have to jog and sprint to restart every time the ball goes out.

"The second one, for myself, he's got every right to contest the ball. It's a fantastic delivery from James, great timing from Dwight and if he gets contact he's a two-goal hero.

"He's obviously a big player for us, that's obviously a big frustration."

Shan had few complaints with the penalty awarded for a Kieran Gibbs foul on Jack Grealish, but was vexed by referee Mike Scott's decision not to level it up when Mason Holgate appeared to be impeded by Tammy Abraham inside the penalty area.

"It's a penalty on Holgate all day long," Shan said."There's no intent to win the ball by Abraham. I think he's been very cute in the manner that he knows he's in the wrong, stays down and plays he's injured.

"All day long for me that's a clear-cut penalty."

Hindsight is a wonderful thing, but Shan said he did not regret hooking Gayle after the striker's first booking an hour into the contest.

"Not at all. Dwight's a competitive individual, his emotional control is very good," Albion's interim boss said.

"The nature of his sending-off, there's no malice in there whatsoever. His eyes are fixed on the ball, he's trying to win first contact.

"The boys took on the game plan and executed it very well. We've been done by a strike from distance and a penalty."

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Sunday Mercury (Birmingham, England)
Date:May 12, 2019
Words:366
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