Rangers manager Mark Warburton claimed that on-loan Tottenham Hotspur starlet Nathan Oduwa was left with as many as six injuries after his brutal treatment at the hands of Livingston on Tuesday.
The 19-year-old winger was substituted at half time of Rangers’ 1-0 victory in the quarter-finals of the Petrofac Training Cup, battered and bruised after a series of hefty tackles such as these…
Oduwa has been accused of showboating this season, as the Daily Mail reports, and it seems as though Livingston’s players were out to leave their mark on him from the off at a wet and wild Ibrox.
The England Under-20 international was seen pleading referee Andrew Dallas to take action, and was not risked after the break as his replacement Nicky Clark scored the winning goal 15 minutes from time.
After the match, Warburton demanded that referees give players of Oduwa’s ilk greater protection.
“You pay your money to watch people like Nathan Oduwa,” the former Brentford boss is quoted as saying by the Scottish Herald. “He was asking for some better protection.
“We want games to be entertaining and for fans to enjoy it. Nathan’s one of those players who gets you off your seat. It is frustrating watching the game. Talented players do need some protection. I’m not saying special treatment, but look after them. Some of the tackles were inappropriate.
“It’s a challenge for him and he’ll need to learn to deal with it. It’s part of his learning and development. He’ll find a solution to it but right now it’s more than frustrating for him.
“The first tackle on Nathan came after about 25 seconds and that was followed by four or five swiftly after that. He’s got bruising to his ankle and foot and I just think it was frustrating, to be polite.
“Nathan has got some knocks. His ankle, foot thigh, shin, neck, nose. You name it, he’s bruised it.”
Livingston manager Mark Burchill put the physicality of the game down to it being a cup tie and was firm in his insistence that the referee was fair, and that his players acted within the rules.
“It’s a cup tie, two teams trying to win and there’s a referee in charge,” he told the Scottish Herald.
“I think it’s a very difficult job being a referee. The first tackle from a Rangers player should have been a yellow card, but he let that go. Then, you have to let a few more go.
“I thought he did handle it well. Did any of my players get sent off? No. I’m happy with that then.”
Even so, it seems that Oduwa and his silky skills have ruffled some feathers north of the border, and the Spurs youngster appears to be in danger of serious injury unless officials start taking notice.
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