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Potters boss bemused by FA warning after praising referee and calls for guidelines over what type of comments are acceptable

Stoke City manager Tony Pulis believes the FA need to clarify rules on what managers can and cannot say in press conferences after he became the third manager in a week to be warned about comments regarding a referee.

Pulis had singled out Howard Webb for praise before the FA Cup semi-final against Bolton, and joined Sir Alex Ferguson and Carlo Ancelotti in being warned for pre-match comments regarding a referee.

Indeed all three commented on the fact Webb was a top referee and they were happy to have him in charge of their game, leaving Pulis bemused as to why managers are warned for praising an official.

"If you've got certain comments to make and they are not meant to be anything but a plus for Howard, why not say it?" said Pulis.

"You are almost thinking 'should I be talking to the press?'. I will be speaking to the League Managers' Association because you don't want to be fined for something I think is normal.

"The FA have to be careful in telling you what you can and cannot say. If they are telling you that you cannot tell the truth, then they are on sticky ground.

"They've got to be careful because my comments weren't meant to be anything but a plus for Howard.

"Other managers have to be careful because the FA seem to be telling us what you can or can't say.

"I don't understand it and my concern is that it was so innocuous. Where does it stop and where are the guidelines?"

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