Yes peeps as the title states Sir Alex Ferguson is in the dock yet again after an FA charge following comments he made in regards to a linesman after Manchester United’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur on the 20th January. For the record, he was fined £12000, but escaped a touchline ban.
Now my friend had actually challenged me to write this blog – stating I should be commenting on Sir Alex Ferguson’s state of mind. I did comment that his mind is fine – he knows exactly what he was doing (he is the mind game king). However I do acknowledge that this knight of the realm definitely surpasses the threshold of behaviour on the football pitch on occasion, so does merit discussion. Thanks for the comments Ahmed – next time you can put them directly on the blog, I’m sure you will have something to say about what I have scribed 😀
Sir Alex is not a stranger to these situations he has “form” for this over a number of years: –
OCT 2003: Hit with £10,000 fine and two-match ban for blasting ref Jeff Winter’s display against Newcastle.
DEC 2007: Slapped with another two-match ban and £10,000 penalty for using foul and abusive language towards Mark Clattenburg at Bolton.
MAY 2008: Escapes further punishment despite criticising Martin Atkinson against Portsmouth.
OCT 2009: Labels Alan Wiley ‘unfit’ and earns a £20,000 fine and four-game ban (two of which are suspended).
JAN 2010: FA activate suspended sentence after he rips into Clattenburg for Darren Fletcher’s red card at Birmingham.
MAR 2011: Questions whether Atkinson was ‘fair’ at Chelsea. Five-game ban and £30,000 fine.
And that is not even mentioning another recent faux pas with a rant at referee Mike Dean and one of his linesman during a game against Newcastle on Boxing Day 2012 – no charge came of this one as the ref did not put it in his report!!!!!!! Furthermore as the master of mind games, Fergie, is not adverse to mentioning opposition players and their antics in pre match press conferences so that the officials are fully ‘briefed’ on any issues that may crop up in a match.
So why does Fergie do this? Well to be fair – in my opinion it’s mainly to put undue pressure on the officials, anything to get an advantage. Graham Poll has made comments to the same affect in the past. As mentioned he is the master of the mind games and will do anything to give Manchester United an advantage and let’s be fair it does seem to work – though having a crack squad helps. Let’s get things right though he is not the only manager that does this, but he is the most high profile, and seemingly the most frequent user of this tactic and the press do have a habit of jumping on anything slightly controversial he says ahead of other less high profile managers or maybe just not as good 😉
My personal thoughts are that Fergie is a winner – simple as – and he will use anything in his arsenal to take the pressure off his team. His last two outbursts have both masked issues with the Manchester United team, but these were just a sideshow in the papers the next day as well as on the radio and tv, with most of the focus on the knighted scotsman bullying the officials.
In general managers should not necessarily get away with open criticism of referees, but it would help imo if they got clear and crucial decisions correct and / or come out and explain their reasons (it is their job after all and they get paid handsomely to do it at Premier League level anyways). Managers do get microphones shoved in their faces straight after matches and asked about contentious decisions and sometimes understandably they can’t hold their tongue and charges may be brought.
So is Sir Alex hard done by (I dont think so – he does have previous and will definately have to watch his step) but if his self-sacrifices help his team win matches – then I’d imagine he thinks it is job done – wouldn’t any manager think like that??????? Let me know your thoughts – Ahmed???????