6 biggest controversies of Nigel Pearson’s 2014/15 Leicester City campaign

nigel-pearson

Nigel Pearson has been sacked as manager of Leicester with the club saying "fundamental differences in perspective exist between us".

The 51-year-old guided the Foxes to safety with seven wins from the last nine games in the Barclays Premier League but was often a controversial figure, having arguments with supporters and journalists alike throughout the course of the season.

Here, Press Association Sport looks at Pearson's biggest controversies of the 2014/15 campaign.

1. Verbal confrontation with a fan

Pearson was fined £10,000 and handed a one-match touchline ban after after arguing with a fan during the club's loss to Liverpool in December (and telling him to ‘f*** and die.’)

The Football Association found Pearson guilty of using "abusive and/or insulting words towards a spectator". He refused to apologise despite calls from the Leicester City Supporters' Club to say sorry.

He said after the incident: "I've had run-ins with fans in the past and in the heat of the moment these things happen.

"I'm not going to repeat what happened on either side. I'm very keen to protect myself and my players. I'm more than happy to stand up for myself in that situation.

"If people were offended then that is regrettable. But there is no need to apologise to somebody of that ilk."

2. Altercation with James McArthur

Pearson was involved in a bizarre altercation with former transfer target James McArthur during his side's 1-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace in February.

Pearson was initially bowled over on the touchline by McArthur after a tackle by Marc Albrighton, resulting in what was initially a friendly exchange between the Foxes boss and Palace midfielder.

Pearson even playfully grabbed McArthur around the throat before helping him to his feet, only to then prevent him from returning to the pitch by grabbing hold of his shirt.

Asked why he refused to let go of McArthur, Pearson replied: "Because he said something to me."

Asked to elaborate, Pearson added: "I don't have to reveal anything do I? I'm more than capable of looking after myself."

3. Angered by Match of the Day comments

Pearson hit out at Match of the Day pundits for making a "mountain out of a molehill" following his clash with McArthur.

Pearson thought the way it was covered by Gary Lineker, Danny Murphy and Jermaine Jenas was unfair.

He said: "It's not helpful when the three fountains of knowledge on Match of the Day make a mountain out molehill, there's nothing in that on Saturday. The lad's okay and it was very light hearted.

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