Holloway slams 'disgusting' attack

THE Seasiders' Carling Cup thriller at Stoke was overshadowed by an alleged racist remark aimed at Jason Euell.

Pool boss Ian Holloway angrily condemned the Stoke fan, who was ejected by stewards at the time of the incident and later detained by police. An investigation is now under way.

Euell was on the Pool bench when he is understood to have been the target of the racist comment during the third-round tie, which Stoke won 4-3 with a goal in the fifth minute of stoppage time.

Holloway said: "We are human beings and Jason is a footballer. The colour of his skin shouldn't matter. It was disgusting.

"The stewards believed what Jason said, got the bloke out and I hope he is banned for life. (He is) an absolute disgrace of a human being.

"I thought those days had gone. Jason was just sat in the dugout at the time. I saw his reaction and I had to calm him down. It's absolutely disgraceful.

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"I don't want to end the evening on a sour note because it was a fantastic game of football, but how can a human being call someone else about the colour of their skin these days? It's just pathetic.

"I'm really shocked that anyone could do that. And particularly the age of this fella – he had to be older than me and I am 46. What's the matter with the bloke?

"I have to thank the stewards because they didn't question anything.

They fired him out of the ground as quickly as they could.

"But the people around him should have said: "That's wrong, I'm not putting up with that'."

Holloway added: "I'm sure Stoke will look at (getting the supporter banned). What he said was unacceptable to me and I'm sure it will be unacceptable to Stoke.

"They are a fantastic club and are marching on, and they won't put up with someone like that in their crowd."

The incident took the shine off a terrific contest, which Stoke won courtesy of a last-gasp goal from their skipper Andy Griffin.

Pool led 2-0 until the 75th minute but were 3-2 down by the 80th. Ben Burgess put the Seasiders back on level terms 60 seconds later ... only for Griffin to inflict the fatal blow.

Holloway had made eight changes to the side which beat Nottingham Forest on Saturday and Stoke boss Tony Pulis, whose side entertain Manchester United at the weekend, made 11.

"For me it was a fantastic game of football," said Holloway. "Both teams tried to entertain the fans. Everybody thinks we're belittling the competition but we're not. We are using our whole squads to try to get them up to speed.

"I just think it was an absolutely marvellous game. Unfortunately I am a loser but I can take it with dignity because I am proud of my Tangerine Army, the fans who sat behind the goal. They encouraged us and my team responded.

"At the end I tried to tell the players not to get too down, though they might a little bit.

"But they shouldn't. I don't like saying well done to my team when they have lost but I had to on this occasion.

"I was very proud and excited to have watched our performance. It's just a shame that we had five crazy minutes when Stoke's quality – and they have a lot of quality – just shone through."