Thursday 21 September 2017

Torres only has himself to blame for red card -- Ferguson

Sam Wallace

MANCHESTER UNITED manager manager Alex Ferguson brushed aside the controversy over Fernando Torres' dismissal and told the striker it was his "own fault" he was sent off for diving.

Torres was sent off when he went down in a challenge with Jonny Evans and was given a second booking. Branislav Ivanovic had been dismissed for a professional foul six minutes earlier.

Soon after Torres' dismissal, Javier Hernandez scored the winner, which should have been ruled out for offside. But Ferguson had no sympathy for the Spanish striker.

"Did he intend to dive? He could have gone on," the United manager, a striker in his playing days, said afterwards. "I would never have gone down. I think it's his own fault. He had already been booked."

Di Matteo vehemently disagreed with Ferguson. "That's a foul. Whatever you want to say about it, it's a foul," he said.

Evans admitted there was some contact but said Clattenburg was still right to send Torres off. "At the time I didn't feel like I'd made contact, but I've seen it again and there was a bit of contact," said the Northern Irish defender.

Di Matteo feels that Chelsea are consistently being harshly treated by officials.

"We are massively disappointed that these key decisions were wrong," he said. "It always seems to be in favour of the opposition. That's a massive disadvantage for us.

"I think (officials) are under a lot of pressure and they have to be able to deal with it. Key decisions have to be right for any team. You don't want the referees to be a big influence in the game. You let the two teams play each other."

The Chelsea manager was confident his team would have won without the red cards. "I thought, at 2-2, we looked like the team that were probably going to win the game," he said.

"So it's a shame, because it was a good game of football with two good teams and the officials ruined it."

Evans said that United's win was a testament to their spirit. "You've got to show character in games like this," he said. "We came out for the second half and you've got to stand up coming to Stamford Bridge."

A Chelsea steward was being treated in hospital for a knee injury last night sustained after Hernandez's winner. Chelsea were investigating reports a chair was thrown from the stand.

Di Matteo and Ferguson had a heated argument in the technical area in the second half, which Di Matteo played down afterwards: "That's part of the game, emotions run high and you say things." (© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent

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