Stoke City have not discussed transfer-listing or selling Ricardo Fuller despite the forward's sending off for slapping his own team mate and club captain Andy Griffin, chairman Peter Coates said on Tuesday. Fuller was dismissed shortly after West Ham United equalised in Sunday's Premier League game at Upton Park which the home side went on to win 2-1 after Stoke had taken an early lead. Coates told BBC Radio Stoke the club had no intention of selling the 29-year-old Jamaican international. He said: "There have been no discussions about selling Ricardo Fuller. He is such an important player for us. We want to strengthen the team rather than sell our best players." Coates was disappointed by Fuller's actions but said referee Mike Jones did not have to send him off and could have used more discretion over the incident early in the second half. "It was a big disappointment because we could have got at least a point from the game," added Coates. "We can't blame the referee for the incident because that's Ricardo's fault," he said. "But I've seen the incident on television and, although I know players shouldn't raise their hands, in the great scheme of things I don't think it deserved any special attention. "I think the referee could have used his discretion and common sense and told the players to get on with the game."
30 December 2008
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