Pedersen hits back at Arteta

Blackburn midfielder Morten Gamst Pedersen has hit back at Mikel Arteta after claiming his Everton opponent should have been sent off following a spat during Saturday's game at Ewood Park.

Everton's 3-2 victory was overshadowed by an ugly first-half flashpoint in which Arteta appeared to react angrily to a Pedersen tackle by poking the Norway international in the eye.

Referee Andre Marriner booked both player,s but an unhappy Pedersen has pleaded his innocence.

"If he got a yellow, I don't know why I got a yellow as I was just standing still," he told the club's official website.

"If I should have a yellow, then maybe he should have something else. But that's up to the referee.

"It's a challenge between me and Arteta and he got really angry.

"I was just standing still and he came into my face. It's okay people shouting at each other – that's part of football – but he can keep his hands away from my face.

"When he poked me in the eye, it's not like you have to throw yourself on the floor because you are going to show he has hit you.

"He poked me in the eye, but there is nothing I can do now."

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