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December 11, 2007
Smith, Nolan on Tuesday's story

The 49ers just issued a statement from both Alex Smith and Mike Nolan about today's Mercury News story in which Smith says he felt Nolan undermined him in the locker room. Here's what they have to say ...

Alex Smith:

"As I was driving away from the facility yesterday after addressing the media, a reporter approached my car and informed me that he was going to write an article where my teammates commented on me in a negative way. It was a brief exchange. I initially reacted out of frustration based on the questions that were being asked, but the article does not reflect how I truly feel.

This whole season has been frustrating for everyone.

I can see how an article like this can be very damaging, but I know my relationships with Coach Nolan and my teammates are stronger than that.

I met with Coach Nolan today and I never intended this to be a distraction for the team or their preparation for the upcoming game.

My focus now is to concentrate on getting healthy so I can return and continue to help my team."

Mike Nolan:

"Alex and I met today and discussed today’s report. I understand how he can be caught off guard. It is a difficult time for Alex. He has not had to deal with an injury that will require surgery before.

The relationship Alex and I have developed over the past three years is stronger than a negative news story.

Our focus is on getting Alex healthy and our team prepared for Cincinnati."

-- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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