Friday 6 December 2019

Fergie moves to heal feud

Alex Ferguson sympathises with Rafael Benitez. Photo: Getty Images
Alex Ferguson sympathises with Rafael Benitez. Photo: Getty Images

Mark Ogden

ALEX FERGUSON has moved to end his year-long feud with Rafael Benitez by admitting he sympathises with the under-pressure Liverpool manager.

The two men were embroiled in a war of words last season following Benitez's infamous 'rant' when he claimed he had a series of "facts" which proved Ferguson received special treatment from match officials.

Ferguson responded by claiming that Benitez was "ridiculous" and "disturbed" and the pair continued to exchange barbs during the run-in to last season's title race.

The United manager will use his programme notes for this Sunday's Premier League clash between the sides at Old Trafford to hand Benitez an olive branch.

With Benitez's future coming under scrutiny due to Liverpool's early elimination from the Champions League and struggles to achieve a top-four finish, Ferguson is understood to have expressed his support for the Spaniard.

The United manager claimed to understand the pressure Benitez is under. Ferguson will also tell Benitez that he sympathises with his predicament, having endured the same difficulties himself.

Meanwhile, Owen Hargreaves emerged unscathed from his long-awaited comeback last night .

The England midfield player showed no signs of discomfort as he played the first 45 minutes of the Manchester United reserve team's 2-0 win over Burnley before being substituted. It was the 29-year-old's first competitive appearance for 18 months after undergoing two knee operations in an effort to cure the chronic tendinitis that he feared would end his career. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Who is your sportstar of the year?

Vote in the Irish Independent Sport Star Awards and you could win the ultimate sports prize.

Prizes include, tickets to Ireland's against Scotland in the Six Nations, All Ireland football and hurling final tickets and much more.

Simply click here to register your vote

Irish Independent

The Left Wing: The problem with the Champions Cup, the Stephen Larkham effect and trouble in Welsh rugby

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport