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Ferguson claims penalty that never was as United´s due

SoccerNews in English Premier League 28 Sep 2008


Sir Alex Ferguson has admitted Manchester United enjoyed a lucky break with a penalty decision that allowed Cristiano Ronaldo to put his team on course for a 2-0 win over Bolton.

But the Scot was still more than happy to accept his side's good fortune and claimed it was no more than they were due from referee Rob Styles.

The official awarded Ronaldo the penalty after the winger was tackled in the area by Jlloyd Samuel with replays clearly showing the defender won the ball fairly.

Wayne Rooney, left out as part of Ferguson's squad rotation policy, claimed the second goal for United – the perfect response to being left out of the starting line-up.

But it was Styles's glaring error that dominated post-match discussion.

Ferguson said: “I was surprised. I haven't seen it again but I was surprised because it looked to me as if their player got his foot on the ball.

“Nonetheless, Rob turned down four or five for us last year so maybe we got payback today but he still owes us four! It was surprising but it was a little break.

“We would have won the game okay but when teams are defending the way they did, with that determination, they are difficult to break down and you need a little break like that.

“We have had some good chances in the match and played some good football at times. I think we deserved the victory.”

Bolton manager Gary Megson was clearly fuming on the touchline and was still incensed by Styles' officiating after the final whistle.

“I can't imagine there is any side in the world where you have to play against the likes of Berbatov, Ronaldo, Tevez and Rooney and yet it was 0-0,” said Megson. “Unfortunately, you can add Rob Styles to those four.

“It wasn't a penalty. At the time when it was given I didn't think it was even close and he was contemplating booking Ronaldo for diving and that would have been wrong. It was a nonsense decision.

“It sticks in the throat that last season, people were talking about diving, feigning injury and technology to help referees with goal-line and penalty incidents and what do we come up with? Respect for the referee, which is quite ironic.

“There would be more respect if he comes out now and says that he's made a mistake but if he tries to justify it, then that respect will disappear anyway. But it wasn't just the penalty incident, our first free-kick was given after 34 minutes.

“When we found out he was refereeing the game on Thursday, apparently he's got a bit of a history with Bolton and quite a few hearts sank.”

Ferguson paid tribute to the response shown by Rooney, who scored his first goal for the club since late April after coming on as a 71st minute substitute, and to home debutant Dimitar Berbatov.

“If we get responses like that from that players we have then it's terrific for the club,” said the Scot. “It's good for the team and everyone.

“It was an excellent second goal and we played some terrific football at times. We're still learning but when we understand how good Berbatov is then we will improve.”

“You don't need to pass to him in space all the time and he produced some great moments, his touch is fantastic at times.

“I thought we played too tight in the first half, with too many six yard passes instead of spreading the game quicker. In the second half, we were more compact and had far more width in our game. It was very satisfying in the end.”

Owen Hargreaves was kept out of the United line-up, with a slight knee injury, while Wes Brown was rested but will be available for Tuesday's Champions League trip to play Aalborg in Denmark.


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  • kevin

    0 0

    he was joking moron…

  • Patrick

    0 0

    United’s due? How ridiculous. If United are due, Arsenal and Liverpool are due about a combined 23 penalties from last season. Ferguson is such an asshole.

  • Patrick

    0 0

    United’s due? How ridiculous. If United are due, Arsenal and Liverpool are due about a combined 23 penalties from last season. Ferguson is such an asshole.

  • kevin

    0 0

    he was joking moron…

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