James Oliver-Pearce: Reading boss Ruben Selles sorry for red card at Lincoln

By Sports Desk December 16, 2023

Reading assistant James Oliver-Pearce revealed boss Ruben Selles apologised after being sent off during the 1-1 draw at Lincoln.

Nelson Abbey scored an own goal for the visitors after just three minutes before Harvey Knibbs secured the Royals a much-needed point in their fight for survival at Sincil Bank.

Reading had the ball in the net on two occasions before half-time, both through Paul Mukairu, but referee Bobby Madley whistled for a foul on the defender for the first before he was denied a second time by the offside flag.

And Selles was sent off when he kicked the ball away to stop the Imps taking a quick throw-in.

Due to English Football League rules, managers who are sent off are not allowed to talk to the media.

Oliver-Pearce, who took the club’s post-match media duties, said: “It was an impulsive reaction. They had a player running to take a quick throw and he tried to delay the restart.

“He was just trying to help the team. He apologised to the dressing room, it’s the first thing he did when he walked in.

“He doesn’t want to let the team down and wants to be out there to support them and the staff.

“I wasn’t aware of it as a rule personally. Apparently if the manager does it it’s a red, but if it’s one of us it isn’t.

“I’m not sure why it’s one rule for us and one rule for others. That’s the laws of the game. It’s a game we’re frustrated by because we had chances to win the game.”

Lincoln boss Michael Skubala was delighted to escape with a point after a below-par performance.

He said: “We’re relieved to get a point. We weren’t good today, let’s be honest.

“We neither effected their last line quick enough when we were trying to be direct or kept it well enough when we needed to.

“If you can’t win it, don’t lose it. That’s the story of the day for us.

“They work hard, sometimes not in the brightest way. They’re not very clever about it sometimes.

“In the end it was a big shift, a tough shift and it’s a point for us. Reading are a good side, they have some good players and we struggled to deal with them down the sides.

“I think it was offside from what I’ve seen. I think they’re fair the referees even though they went in our favour.

“I am aware of that rule now so I won’t do it. I’m not really interested in that, I just wanted to get our lads through that game.”

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