Sir Alex blames FA for unfair treatment
After having maintained a dignified silence for quite a while, Ferguson’s volcano finally burst with the hot lava aimed at Football Association (FA).
According to the record-breaking United gaffer, United are always singled out when FA officials are looking for a scapegoat to show their resolve to keep the English game disciplined. Though some of the comments may reek of senility, the Red Devils’ boss was convinced that it was due to United’s stature as the Premier League’s ‘most famous club’.
A notable fact which needs mentioning is that Ferguson was hit with a five-match touchline ban and a £30,000 fine after criticising referee Martin Atkinson following United’s defeat at Chelsea last-season and has been a habitual critic of the ‘dark ways’ of FA. Wayne Rooney’s two-match suspension after his verbal tirade into the cameras in a roller-coaster against West Ham did not register well with Sir Alex, either.
Ferguson was convinced that it was his side’s resounding success in the Premier League era and the consequent resentment that has led to the unfair treatment. The Green Goblins at FA and the English media are envious of the success that has conspired during his reign and try various methods to unsettle his squad.
Ferguson was pretty diplomatic in his comments, probably wary of another disciplinary hearing and kept his points very astutely during the Red Devils’ pre-season tour of the United States.
“I don’t really know whether it’s about me or the club. That’s a difficult one. Maybe there is some resentment about United at the top level because of our success.
“I think that has got something to do with it. They have certainly always found a way to treat us differently.
“Personally I felt hard done by last season. I defend my club, but that’s my job.
“Part of the problem is that when I make comments, the media are on to the FA right away. There is no doubt about that. Then they feel forced to do something and they are afraid of what might happen if they don’t. There is no consistency in the disciplinary process.”
Ferguson was quick to point out that his tryst with destiny started when he became disillusioned with the FA review process after Ryan Giggs and Cristiano Ronaldo were fined for supporting Ruud Van Nistelrooy in a bad-blooded encounter against arch-rivals Arsenal, who Ferguson feels was the victim and not the wrong-doer. Recalling his experiences at the consequent disciplinary hearing, Ferguson was quoted as saying -
“We went to the meeting and there was a long table and about twelve of them sat there. There was a girl taking notes and about five old guys and one of them was sleeping.
“Maurice Watkins, our solicitor, nudged me and said ‘have a look at that’. What a bloody joke! Honestly!
“It was at a hotel near Heathrow. It must have cost a grand for the room, tea and sandwiches. It cost a fortune just to say ‘Not Guilty’.”
A notable fact is that Ferguson is the only Premier League boss to have been banned for criticising a match official when he was given a four-match ban – two suspended – and was fined £20,000 for claiming that Alan Wiley was not fit to referee.
Sir Alex is known to use these diversion tactics every now and then, apart from churning up a real roaster and this barrage against FA is just an appetiser for the authorities, by the looks of it.
Stay glued for further action on the front…