Sir Alex Ferguson Contradicts His Assistant Mike Phelan
Well it didn’t take long for Sir Alex Ferguson to completely blow his Manchester United assistant, Mike Phelan’s assertion last week well and truly out of the water. It can’t really be much of a surprise, considering what Phelan actually said. I mean, as soon Phelan declared, “we can’t dispute the referees decision” after Mark Clattenburg’s decision not to take action against Wayne Rooney for the now infamous elbow on James McCarthy, you just knew that in the very close future, exactly that would happen.
Sir Alex Ferguson doesn’t exactly hide and shy away when asked about a controversial referee’s decision. He has been critical of the men in black many times in the past, whether that be due to a decision made by them that he strongly disagrees with, or even if their fitness is called into question. He doesn’t cower in corners when it comes to the men that call the shots. So for Mike Phelan to say after the Wigan game that he and his club (including Sir Alex) could not criticize a referee’s decision, well it is a bit rich.
It is even more bizarre once you hear what the Manchester United manager said after the Chelsea game of the referee. It is fair to say, that from his comments, the Scot isn’t the biggest fan of Martin Atkinson. He said:
“You want a fair ref. I don’t know how he got this game. I must say, when I saw who it was, I did fear that,”
“We defended badly for the first goal, That was a bad one to lose but the penalty kick was so soft, deary me.
“It’s three years in a row that decisions have changed the game here. It was incredible.
“Luiz had done (Javier) Hernandez off the ball and nothing was done. Then he does Rooney, clear as day.
“You are talking about what changed the game in the second half, these are decisions that change the game and he [Atkinson] is going to be refereeing every week!
“I’m proud of my players. They endured a lot of bad decisions against them and they have done their best.
“They [Chelsea] got a lot of decisions that surprised me in a major game like that.”
Now if you looked carefully, you may have seen a little criticism of the referee. Okay, okay, there is a lot of criticism aimed at Martin Atkinson. I wonder whether Mike Phelan sees it that way considering his statement earlier about not criticising referees?
Sir Alex’s frustration is understandable though, as David Luiz certainly should have seen a red card for at least three very bookable offences.
The first tackle on Michael Carrick was a definite yellow – and he as shown the card. It was a late, vicious and dangerous challenge that had Carrick flying through the air. Then Luiz committed a questionably worse foul on Rooney, as he cynically blocked a run with an outstretched leg. The referee had no obstructions to the incident, but waved lay on. Luiz also blocked Chicharito off the ball, leaving Chicharito lying on the floor thanks to the body check but no action was taken.
Other debateable decisions include the penalty given to win the game in which Yuri Zhirkovic left his leg in looking for the foul from Smalling, and the fact that Vidic was shown red, but not Luiz. All in all, it was a frustrating night for United and Sir Alex, who blew a golden opportunity to move further away from Arsenal in the title race, and leave Chelsea’s title hopes languishing in fifth/fourth place.
Arsenal as it happens have a game in hand and have now witnessed Manchester United’s second loss of the season and will have a chance to inflict the third when the two title challengers come head to head later in the season, which could become a very decisive game in the race for supremacy.
Up next is Liverpool for United, and here’s hoping that no controversial referee’s decisions will impact the game and that Mike Phelan keeps his dubious statements to himself when in front of BBC cameras.
Tell me what you think!
Submitted by DBSFootball
/ 1 month ago
Manchester United have joined rivals Arsenal in the race to sign RB Leipzig's £52m...
/ 2 months ago
Manchester United are looking to pull off a £180m double swoop for Jadon Sancho...
/ 2 months ago
Arsenal and Tottenham are ready to battle it out with a number of top...
/ 2 months ago
Jadon Sancho is keen on joining Manchester United as the Red Devils close-in on...