Managers get shirty at Briggs sending off

Matthew Briggs was sent off after taking his shirt off to celebrate a goal against Wanderers

Matthew Briggs was sent off after taking his shirt off to celebrate a goal against Wanderers

First published in Sport Bucks Free Press: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

BOTH managers hit out at the rule that sees players booked for removing their shirts celebrating goals after it cost Millwall defender Matthew Briggs last night.

He netted the only goal of the game as the Lions beat Wycombe Wanderers and celebrated scoring on his debut by taking his shirt off.

It resulted in the mandatory yellow card from referee Andy D'Urso - but the former Fulham man was given a second booking for a foul on Sido Jombati, leading to Millwall playing the final half an hour of the Capital One Cup tie a man light.

His manager Ian Holloway and Wanderers chief Gareth Ainsworth both admitted to having some sympathy for the player however.

Holloway had no complaints at the dismissal of the 23-year-old but said: "I'm going to have to discipline Briggsy. That was pure emotion.

"You've got to keep your shirt on. He should have shoved his face in the dirt, or done something to not get booked for. It's totally unprofessional.

"I wouldn't do it with the discipline I've got if I know it's going to be a yellow card.

"Is it offensive? It is in certain countries, so that comes from FIFA and UEFA, so we've all got to follow it, but just let people celebrate sometimes.

"As a manager, I'm fuming. He's upset. It's an emotional game and I hope he learns from it.

"I'm delighted he scored. I said to him by the end of your time with me, hopefully you've scored so many you won't bother, you'll just turn and jog back."

But he added: "To be honest if I had a body like that I'd probably want to take my shirt off."

Ainsworth said: "It's in the rules. One of my players [Peter Murphy] ran to the fans and got booked for celebrating with the fans on Saturday.

"It's a silly booking because the whole game revolves around scoring goals. Why not give the guys these moments? I don't know why he can't put his shirt back on and we kick off again.

"I think it's a crazy rule but if the rule's there you have to obey them.

"I'll be fining any of my players if they take their shirts off."

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