Saturday 25 February 2017

Ferguson hails Holloway's 'fantastic job'

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson believes Ian Holloway deserves to be applauded for the job he is doing at Blackpool.

The Barclays Premier League leaders have been denied a date at the seaside tomorrow evening with a frozen pitch at Bloomfield Road forcing a postponement.

But Ferguson was full of praise for Holloway's achievements this season when he was asked to assess the Premier League newcomer's progress.

"What is happening at Blackpool is unbelievable," Ferguson told radio station Key 103.

"They could have been five up before Bolton had a shot on goal. They are attacking every team, they are having a go and are scoring goals. What more can you say about them.

"Ian Holloway has done a fantastic job. He brought Charlie Adam down from Glasgow when nobody seemed to want him. He is one of the best players in the league. He is having a fantastic season.

"Ian took Craig Cathcart from us. He is a terrific lad and a good player. He also got him for a song. Ian has done his homework very well and is getting his rewards for it.

"He has taken a chance on players and they are rewarding him for giving them an opportunity to play in the Premier League."

Ferguson, reflecting on the 4-0 Carling Cup defeat against West Ham, said: "A few years from now these players will go down there and win that kind of game. That is what experience gives you. It was not a 4-0 scoreline.

"We had the most possession, we had the most entries into the penalty box. They had six strikes at goal and scored four. We defended poorly. You cannot afford that in a cup tie.

"The only positive out of it was that Ryan (Giggs) and Darren (Fletcher) got a game. The only one who came up to standard was Anderson."

Meanwhile Michael Owen could be back in time for the festive fixtures.

The striker has returned to full training following a hamstring injury that has kept him out of action since October.

Ferguson told MUTV: "He is doing very well. He took part in the football side of it yesterday.

"I would say he's two weeks away [from playing]. We need to make sure he does a good stint of football training before we bring him into the games."

However midfielder Owen Hargreaves is no nearer a return from his hamstring problem.

Ferguson added: "It's a bad blow for the lad and it's hard to take, given the length of time he's been out and the amount of football he's missed."

Press Association

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