Why I feel so sorry for Alex Ferguson
Fergie's new statue
Poor old Fergie
In an interview given half an hour after the game finished Sir Alex Ferguson, who would have seen replays of Johnny Evans tackle on Fernando Torres has admitted that he probably did catch Fernando Torres as the Chelsea striker attempted to skip by him, but the Manchester United manager says that Torres only has himself to blame for his red card. Explaining why Mark Clattenburg was right to send him off Fergie stated: "The decision the referee has to make is whether the striker has chosen to go down. He was through on goal - I don't know why he has gone down. I think it's his own fault. I can't understand why a player would choose to go down."
Mind you the way Fergie dived out of the dugout during any other ref apart from Blunderburg would have given the old boy wasn't given a yellow card for simulation. A lip reader has told me what he believes Fergie said as he dived out from the dugout yesterday. "That's not the way to do it Ashley, do it like this", but as the FA commission reported, those lip readers just can't be trusted.
I really do feel sorry for the old boy as old age has clearly caught up with him and he's getting a bit confused. He appears to have forgotten Evans' admission 10 minutes earlier that he did make contact, so no probably about it. The poor old boy also seems to have forgotten that Welbeck, Young, Rooney and Hernandez play for him if he can't understand why he'd gone down, surely he would only have to ask any of those four why you would choose to go down when you could stay on your feet.
This is a quite stunning statement from Fergie considering Danny Welbeck's recent antics against Wigan and in the game here last year; Young's antics last year when even red eyed Fergie felt the need to admonish him in public. I thought that was quite harsh of Fergie, to be fair to Ashley Young the final few places for the GB Olympic diving team had still to be finalised at the time.
A nice star dive for the sending off today by the way, although it was more Peter Kaye than Tom Daly, but you have to remember that poor Ash has been out injured and no doubt he will be getting plenty of practice in over the next few months I always find it strange how some footballers feel the need to try to get in the record books for the first unaided flight in history, rather than cushioning their falls with their hands like the rest of us mere mortals when we are about to hit the deck.
When you also consider consider that Rooney has twice been booked for penalty box simulation and the two for Hernandez and you really do have to feel sorry for the old boy that he doesn't realise that he has such a rich array of tumblers to choose from for advice, maybe it's confusing having so much choice at his age.
Stranger still when you consider that applying Fergie's logic to the Ivanovich sending off. If Fergie had been the ref surely he would have shown Young a yellow card, Ivanovich would have stayed on and Chelsea would have had a free kick for simulation. yet for some strange reason the old boy thought there was "No doubt" about that one, he probably thought the commentator had asked him who his favourite band were.
Specsavers in Manchester could be busy today. Johnny Evans talking about the Torres sending off: "At the time I didn't feel like I'd made contact. I've seen it again and there was contact, but not enough to bring him down. I think the referee has made the right decision to send him off."
Now I can understand anyone not realising how bad the tackle was in real time, but you made the tackle Johnny. Close ups of the foul show that it was a head on tackle at a 180 degree angle, connection was first made near the top of his sock and he raked his foot down his shin. Maybe Evans had a dead leg at the time and was suffering from a lack of feeling in his foot. Maybe I'm being a little harsh on Evans; it may not have been exactly 180 degrees.
So both Ferguson and Evans admit there was contact, Torres hasn't feigned injury and there was contact and Mark Clattenburg is once again embroiled in controversy following a Man United game. This is the referee who gave possibly the worse decision ever seen in a premier game when he allowed Nani to sit on the floor holding the ball in the penalty area after Nani thought he had been fouled. Brad Freidel put the ball down for a goal kick and Nani put the ball in the net and Blunderburg allowed the goal to stand. Blunderburg was involved in another major controversy last season when he allowed Wayne Rooney to stay on the pitch after clearly elbowing James Mc Carthy in the Wigan game. Ex ref Graham Poll commented "If Clattenburg really had seen the elbow, which replays showed clearly, then he would surely have sent Rooney off and could not have merely smiled and put his arm around the England striker, allegedly saying that he had had a good view of the "coming together".
Clattenburg was given the chance to right his wrong on the Monday but refused to change his decision. Wigan must love playing Man United and Poor old Fergie seems to have forgotten already that Welbeck failed to stay on his feet during the most recent Wigan game, despite the fact that it was only a few weeks ago.
The old boy really is in a bad way:
"We've never got breaks down here and had some terrible decisions against us in the last few years. But today we have got a little break for the goal - Chicharito may have been offside."
Those terrible decisions would be the two distinctly dodgy penalties awarded by Howard Webb last year, including a truly outrageous dive by Danny Welbeck (Yes, the same Welbeck, who to be fair has learnt his lesson since then, in fact he's learnt it so well that he now does it in internationals. Then there was also the Champion's league game at Stamford Bridge in the semi final when Ramires was scythed down in the box and a truly obvious penalty wasn't given.
Poor old Fergie he really does deserve our pity as his memory is clearly going; he seems to have forgotten about those two offside goals at Old Trafford last year as well, but he never mentioned them in the first place so perhaps there is still hope for him, especially as he still remembers vividly a 50/50 free kick that Martin Atkinson had the audacity to give to the home side which Chelsea scored from. He used to trot that one out every year, despite the fact that it happened 5 years ago but he didn't mention it this year so maybe his memory really has gone after all and the old boy truly deserves our sympathy.
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