Johnson criticises Newcastle defender Perch for his role in Reina red card

Glen Johnson has criticised Newcastle United defender James Perch for his part in an incident during Liverpool’s defeat to the Magpies that saw Reds goalkeeper Pepe Reina shown a straight red card, ClubCall has reported.

Reina and Perch confronted each other after the goalkeeper took exception to Perch’s challenge as he gathered up a loose ball. The players went head-to-head with the Spaniard appearing to push his head towards Perch, who fell to the floor holding his face. Perch was booked for his part in the original tackle while Reina was shown his marching orders. Liverpool had already used their three substitutes, forcing full-back Jose Enrique to deputise for his compatriot.

The injured Johnson wrote on Twitter: “What have I just seen. Is Perch for real, joke”. Liverpool were already two goals down when Reina was dismissed in the 82nd minute through a Papiss Cisse brace. Reina’s dismissal means the previously ever-present goalkeeper will miss Liverpool’s next three matches, at home to Aston Villa, away to Blackburn Rovers and the FA Cup semi-final at Wembley against Merseyside rivals Everton.

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