England boss Neville praises Duggan following alleged spitting incident

Toni Duggan appeared to be the victim of a spitting incident against Cameroon and her response earned praise from Phil Neville.

Toni Duggan fights for the ball in the match against Cameroon.   -  Getty Images

Phil Neville praised Toni Duggan's response to an "unacceptable" incident in which Augustine Ejangue appeared to spit on the England forward.

An ill-tempered clash between the Lionesses and Cameroon in the Women's World Cup last 16 on Sunday saw a number of flashpoints - and video replays seemingly showed Ejangue spit on Duggan's arm.

England coach Neville, who oversaw a 3-0 win, said he was "ashamed" of the Cameroon players' behaviour throughout the tie but reserved praise for Duggan.

"[The press officer] just mentioned it to me now," he told a news conference. "I think it's pretty clear, so it's unacceptable.

"I will praise Toni Duggan because that, for me, is the worst form of anything you can do on a football pitch really. There's no place for it on a football pitch.

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"Toni Duggan was fantastic, the way she handled it. I think it showed the humility and class my players showed. She wiped it off her and got on with playing football. That, for me, makes me very proud."

Neville was dealt a late blow as captain Stephanie Houghton was the subject of a dreadful challenge from Alexandra Takounda Engolo.

Houghton missed her post-match media duties to receive treatment and Neville said: "We're concerned about her, she's not someone who stays down.

"It was a late tackle and we're going to have to do everything possible to get her fit for the quarter-final. She's a big player for us, our captain, and her and Lucy Bronze were outstanding.

"The big players stand up in the big occasion. I thought the composure of the two captains spread through the team."

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