West Ham midfielder Mark Noble received a straight red from referee Michael Oliver following a late challenge on Leicester midfielder Wilfred Ndidi this weekend, and Hammers boss Manuel Pellegrini has shared what the captain said following the incident.
The Hammers were leading 1-0 at the King Power stadium thanks to a close-range effort from Fabian Balbuena after half an hour. However, just eight minutes later, Noble went in late on Ndidi, catching the Nigerian high on the shin.
Referee Oliver had no hesitation in brandishing the red card despite Noble protesting his innocence following the reckless lunge.
Speaking after the 1-1 draw, Pellegrini addressed the media and told them what the captain had said after being given his marching orders.
"Mark told me he didn't go in with bad intentions, he tried to get the ball. Maybe he arrived late but I can't speak about it," said the Hammers boss as reported by Football.London.
Despite West Ham's resolute defending for two thirds of the game with only 10 men, they eventually had to settle for a share of the spoils as Ndidi got the equaliser in the 89th minute.
Before Noble's dismissal, West Ham were dominating the game and the Hammers will be ruing the sending off of their captain as the three points were snatched away from them by Leicester.
However, there can be no complaints from West Ham as the challenge was worthy of a straight red and could have seriously hurt Ndidi as the captain's studs planted directly onto the Nigerian's thigh.