We are Stoke and we don't complain, says Pulis over fans' missiles


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The Independent Football

Stoke City manager Tony Pulis will not make a complaint to Uefa even though two of his players were targeted by missile-throwing Besiktas fans during Wednesday's Europa League match in Istanbul.

"We won't be complaining. We're Stoke and we don't complain," Pulis told reporters after the match ended in a 3-1 win for the home side.

A cigarette lighter was thrown at Ricardo Fuller after he opened the scoring for the visitors at the Inonu Stadium while Jermaine Pennant was initially unable to take a corner during the second half because of the objects raining down on him.

Several Besiktas players appealed for calm from their fans and Polish referee Marcin Borski stopped play and spoke to the home bench before the situation eased.

Besiktas could still be in trouble with Uefa if the referee details the incidents in his match report.

Pennant said: "I was about to take a corner and was getting pelted with lighters and euro coins. I was thinking of picking one up and putting it in my sock. I didn't want to take [the corner] because every second I could see things flying past me. Until that stopped I didn't feel comfortable taking the corner and then obviously the referee called me away."

Stoke had already qualified for the last 32 before the match, but Besiktas made sure of their place with victory and top place in Group E.

Fuller put Stoke ahead with an early goal but the turning point came after an hour when Stoke's central defender Matthew Upson conceded a penalty and was sent off for bringing down Hugo Almeida. Manuel Fernandes made it 1-1 with the penalty before Mustafa Pektemek headed Besiktas ahead after 74 minutes and Edu scored with a brilliantly-struck curler eight minutes from the end.

Meanwhile, Wigan defender Antolín Alcaraz has been cleared of serious injury but remains a doubt for this weekend's Barclays Premier League clash against Chelsea.

The Paraguay international was forced off during last weekend's win at West Bromwich Albion with a rib injury. The 29-year-old has not broken a bone, as manager Roberto Martinez feared, but he faces a fitness test ahead of Chelsea's Saturday evening visit to the DW Stadium.

Martinez said: "We had the X-ray back and it is not a fractured rib, which was our first concern. But it is too early to call if he will be fit for Saturday – the swelling is still there. Apart from that, everyone is fit."