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Football | Barclays Premier League

'Walters had one of those days'



Stoke manager Tony Pulis backed Jon Walters to cope with the embarrassment of scoring two own goals and missing a penalty in his side's 4-0 defeat against Chelsea on Saturday.

Walters endured one of worst individual displays in Premier League history as he headed past his own goalkeeper in the 45th and 62nd minutes at the Britannia Stadium to gift Chelsea a two-goal lead.

And to compound Walters' misery, the Republic of Ireland striker failed to convert a penalty in the closing minutes after being brought down by John Terry.

Walters saw his spot-kick cannon over off the crossbar, but Pulis is convinced his burly targetman will be able to shrug off the humiliation.

"Jon is alright, we look after people at the club," Pulis said. "It was not our day, it was Chelsea's.

"We all have bad days. He had a bad day in terms of things not going his way but he was still brave enough to pick the ball up and take the penalty which is what he is all about."

Walters can take comfort from knowing that he is not alone when it comes to scoring more than once against his own team.

Last year, former Chelsea and Leeds defender Michael Duberry scored twice against his own Oxford United team facing Hereford before hitting a last-minute equaliser at the right end.

In the own goals hall of shame, Dutch side Den Haag once scored three own goals in one half in a 1971 Uefa Cup game at Wolves while, in 1976, Chris Nicholl of Aston Villa scored all four goals in a 2-2 draw at Leicester.

But all these pale when compared to the "achievement" of Madagascan club side Antananarivo who once scored 149 own goals in a match in protest at a refereeing decision.

Pulis later added: "Jon had to try and make the first clearance with his head because Juan Mata was right behind him, so he would have scored anyway. For the second one, I feel that (goalkeeper) Asmir Begovic should have come and dealt with that one. Jon shouldn't have been left in that position.

"It was just one of those days."

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