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02/12/2004. On a bad night for Fulham, Aston Villa manager David O'Leary was relieved that his full-back Mark Delaney did not suffer a broken his leg after being the victim of a reckless challenge by the Cottagers' Carlos Bocanegra.

Bocanegra received a straight red card as Villa beat Fulham 2-1 at Loftus Road.

But in the immediate aftermath of the game O'Leary did not know the full extent of the damage to Delaney.

"I was angry," said O'Leary. "It was a disgusting tackle and I was outraged.

"Chris Coleman and his team don't do those type of things. It was a bad tackle, Chris acknowledged that and the referee dealt with it."

"The doctors are with the lad now and we don't think he's broken his leg.

"He could be going for scans, but I'm not sure because I only had time to check he hadn't broken his leg before doing my interviews."

Fulham boss Coleman acknowledged the seriousness of Bocanegra's tackle, but hinted that no further action would be taken.

He said: "Carlos went and apologised to Mark Delaney so what more can I say to him?"

"He went on to their coach afterwards to shake hands with Mark.

"I went to see him as well and there's no bad feeling. The most important thing is Mark's okay.

"Carlos isn't malicious or a bad boy and plays the game the right way. It was a rush of blood and a badly-mistimed challenge."

However, Coleman was also concerned about the Fulham fan who threw a bottle at an assistant referee. The incident occurred after Fulham had a penalty appeal rejected, and was brought to the attention of referee Barry Knight.

"It's a disgrace," said Coleman. "He should be banned forever from any football game because he's an absolute coward and we don't need idiots like that."

He added: "Anyone who comes to Fulham will tell you it's nice and friendly.

"We haven't got a bad crowd and I don't know who that idiot was but I hope they find him."

Graham Lister

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Has anyone got the clip?:D
 
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