Charlie Adam surprised by red card but admits to letting Stoke down
Stoke played the final hour against Everton with a one-man disadvantage following Adam’s dismissal.
In his first home appearance since having a decisive late penalty saved against Brighton last month, Adam was dismissed when he lunged in with his studs up and caught Rooney in a game relegation-threatened Stoke would go on to lose 2-1.
There were few complaints from Adam when referee Martin Atkinson brandished the red card, though the 32-year-old admitted afterwards he disagreed with the decision.
Adam spoke to Atkinson after the game and found no change in the official’s conviction, despite being told by the victim of his challenge he did not consider it malicious.
“I was surprised it was a red card,” Adam said.
“I thought he was going to pull a yellow card out. The conditions weren’t great and obviously Wayne’s got there before me.
“I’ve let the team down and I’ve let the squad down. I think you’ve got to take the conditions into account but (the referee) is happy with the decision he’s made.
“I went over to see Wayne just more or less to see if he thought it was a bad tackle. He said, ‘No’. But that’s just the way it is.
“The referee makes the decision then that’s it. I’ve been in to see him and he still thinks he’s happy with his decision. I’m gutted because it’s a difficult time for everyone.”
The Potters have won just once since Christmas and remain three points from safety, with Everton having now reached the 40-point mark and near-certain survival thanks to Cenk Tosun’s brace.
There were loftier expectations when Everton made a number of eye-catching moves last summer, but an imbalanced squad and managerial upheaval contributed to a difficult campaign.
Current boss Sam Allardyce has been using a psychologist to try and imbue his players with confidence and improve their form away from home, and he now wants to hire one on a full-time basis.
“Sometimes talking’s cheap and sometimes talking gets everyone on the same page,” said Everton captain Phil Jagielka.
“I think all of us agreed with the principles that we needed to stick by – team ethics.
“It’s not rocket science but I think saying it out loud and looking at a few clips of what it does when we do that just sort of makes you realise we’re not a million miles away.”
Jagielka’s central-defensive partner Michael Keane will not be part of the England team during the international break having been left out of Gareth Southgate’s squad.
Keane, 25, played in the Three Lions’ most recent two competitive fixtures in October and Jagielka cannot fathom why he has been omitted.
“I looked at the squad and couldn’t work out why he wasn’t (in),” Jagielka said.
“He’s obviously playing regularly but that’s the manager’s choice. He’s had five or six different defensive partners, he’s played on the left, he’s played on the right, even (had) different full-backs to play alongside.
“As a defender you want to get regularly playing with the same people around you and strike up those relationships, especially when you’re coming to a new club.
“He was bought for some decent money, it’s important those people around you help you settle. I think he’s just getting to that stage now.”