Man Utd, Preston and the Ferguson dynasty: wrong and right

UEFA Champions LeagueImage: tpower1978

The TalkSport site has been having some fun recalling the various times Sir Alex Ferguson – that’s him, gagged, in the image above – has blown his top. The research may well have taken years, so copious is the archive.

Why did they bother? Ah, then you haven’t heard that the Manchester United boss has – TalkSport’s words – “reacted angrily to the sacking of son Darren at Preston by demanding the return of three of his Man United players from their loan spells at Deepdale”.

Hardly the most important talking point of the year just ending, but interesting all the same. And Salut! Sunderland – or, since this is a democracy, one part of it – is instinctively on SAF’s side.

This is part of a sequence of views expressed at the Blackcats list:

* “Not only does this crybaby continue to ignore a new PL condition about post TV interviews (which the PL still haven’t fined him for) he’s now withdrawn his loan players from Preston just because they’ve sacked his son. He’s a monster, but whil the media cowtow to him he’ll continue to do what he likes!”

– Ian

* “To be fair, the loanees from Stoke to Preston have gone too.

I do agree about Fergie, though. He’s a twat. If I was the BBC, I would minimise coverage of Man Utd until Fergie played ball. The one thing that clubs crave is exposure. If all that Man Utd got was the last 5 mins on MOTD, no analysis and no additional coverage, would he still be so belligerent or would the board have something to say to him about it? Same for newspapers who have journos repeatedly banned – stop reporting on Man Utd. It’ll never happen though.”

– Neil

* “Well he loaned the players cos of the manager so I can’t say I blame him.

I’d probably do the same if I was fergie, protecting his own and all that.”

– Rob

AND then

* “Fergie is petulant and irrational, and yes should be fined heavily for his babyish refusal to give post-match interviews, but I don’t think he’s a bad man and find myself agreeing with Rob. If I had some sort of financial interest in Acton Ladies FC, and they ditched my daughter, I’d withdraw it however badly she had been playing.”

In the event, there may have been no need for me to defend SAF. If Scott the Red’s comments below are correct, the original reports – we quoted TalkSport but they appeared pretty much everywhere else if I remember correctly – were bollocks. SAF says the players wanted to return.

If that is the case, and I have no reason to suppose otherwise, those who criticised him for acting in revenge for his son’s dismissal were wrong to do so. I trust StR is not so concerned with what Salut! Sunderland says that he has neglected to bang on the doors of TalkSport, Associated Newspapers et al to demand retractions.

– Monsieur Salut

… who should have added that Ian – first comment reproduced – finished by wishing everyone a Happy New Year. Salut! Sunderland follows suit: have a good one (SAF, great manager if occasionally boorish curmudgeon, included).

17 thoughts on “Man Utd, Preston and the Ferguson dynasty: wrong and right”

  1. Tiresome as this has become, I have added a few lines to the original posting to take account of Scott’s latest message. No separate article is necessary; I criticised SAF in more general terms, and that is unaffected by this explanation of events at PNE (which I am happy to take at face value), and also praised his superb greatness as a manager. Others slagged him off. Stop confusing the message and messenger.

  2. Are you going to write an article on this? Or just going to bad mouth the manager and turn a blind eye when the truth comes out? Is writing about other teams only interesting when Sir Alex gets an ear bashing?

    “I spoke with Preston’s owner, Trevor Hemmings, with whom I have a good relationship, and explained that the players did not want to go back.

    “Our reserve team coach, Warren Joyce, spoke to me about it and we decided that the players should go to training that day and we would discuss it later. We decided that if the players did not want to go back to Preston there was no point in them being there.

    “Matty James was also already injured, and both Ritchie De Laet and Joshua King were coming back in two days’ time anyway. So, under the regulations, we decided to keep them.”

  3. Scott. You are hypersensitive and keep overlooking
    1) that we were simply reporting on what was in the public domain, and placed there by the mass media. Your complaints about the way this matter has been presented should be addressed to the various sportswriters and broadcasters who repprted the decision as a response to DF’s sacking. I have already said the story is bollocks if no such link existed. and dont need Pulis as a witness.
    2) I made it clear that if he did act as reported, SAF would in any case have my support, instinctively, as father

    I cannot see what your gripe with Salut! Sunderland is, save that we dare to mention it at all.

  4. Are you going to write an article about Tony Pulis withdrawing his loanee players too?

    Maybe a club at the bottom of the Championship with no manager isn’t the most attractive place for managers to send out their young players……

    Or maybe Darren Ferguson is actually Tony’s son?

    Totally one sided article is shown up by Pulis’ decision. Obviously pleased about that.

  5. “Why do I not like Man U, let me count the ways.” Tony said.

    There’s about 75,000 of them Tony. There’s at least one for every seat.

  6. These kids that Preston have had on loan haven’t done them much good anyway as Preston are adrift at the bottom It sounds as if Sir Alex has done them a favour! I see Pulis has taken his two drongos back to Stoke. Maybe we’ll see PNE head up the league now they’ve got rid of other clubs dead wood.

  7. This might be a Sunderland site, but it is inhabited and contributed to by people who unlike the IKEA visiting types that populate Old Trafford from the likes of Trowbrige and Uttoxeter we are interested in the broader football world. Whilst we may not be interested in the latest brothel attended by your star striker or what Dimitar Berbatov has to drink for breakfast, news is news. If you don’t like what we have to say on here you can always just ignore us. You might think that Manchester Utd own the football world, but despite Ferguson’s attempts to stifle the media this wonderful thing called the internet allows us to discuss anything we choose, whether or not you like it. Personally I’m quite happy if it gets under your skin as you glory seekers get it way too easy. The choice for you is simple. Either contribute (and you are welcome), but don’t come on here telling us not too, otherwise we might just suggest you fuck off!

  8. Scott: if the story proves to be bollocks – ie without any legs whatsoever – then Fergie is beyond criticism. If he “brought forward” a proper decision as a reaction to PNE’s actions, then the story is not bollocks. i don’t know which is right.
    But in any case I supported him. As a father, i’d have done the same. My views on his temperament are sincere, as is my appreciation of his achievements.

    And even if I am in a minority, I do not not adopt any hostility towards United. As you well know from our previous dealings.

  9. SalutSunderland – A response to the points I made would be better appreciated tbh. Get off your soap box eh mate?

    Talking about issues that have nothing to do with Sunderland, fair enough, but why present them is such a biased, one sided way? I’ve presented you with the other side of the story but you’ve chosen to ignore that in your response to me.

    I thought you were better than the ABU nonsense you see all over the internet mate.

  10. And my old friend Scott the Red cannot for a second be suggesting that a football site shouldn’t feel perfectly at liberty to talk about football issues!

    Salut! Sunderland is unashamedly a Sunderland site, but also keeps an eye on what is happening in football generally – we even have an occasional French footie feature – and tries to offer joined-up thinking of interest to all supporters. Why do you suppose our Who are You? slot – in which you have taken part, Scott – is so popular? Because it attracts fans of other clubs who have even been known to bring or develop their internal spats here.

  11. Damien and Scott. Surely you lads aren’t suggesting that Talk Sport are making a story out of nothing are you?

  12. What has this got to do with Sunderland?

    1. Two of the three players were due back anyway. The only player on a year long loan is Matty James and it has yet to be confirmed that he is returning to the club.

    2. Preston aren’t very good but Sir Alex obviously felt it in the best interest of his players to go and play for a manager who would obviously take good care of them (and he also wanted to help his son out). Now that his son has gone, the next manager isn’t going to care any more about Matty James than anyone else. So, no point sacrificing quality of club anymore, so for his development, get him at a better club in the Championship, not one that is going to be relegated.

    3. With Darren as manager, Preston were allowed to use all the facilities at Carrington, one of the best training grounds in Europe. The three players wouldn’t have gone to Preston at all if not for the fact Darren was manager. Preston weren’t complaining when they were enjoying the benefits of having Sir Alex’s son as their manager… so isn’t it a bitch to complain on their behalf now that they’ve sacked Sir Alex’s son?

  13. I’m a Manchester United fan, and unsurprisingly this comment is somewhat in support of what’s happened.

    There’s nothing unusual that’s happened. De Laet and King were both due to be recalled anyway. De Laet was only a one month emergency loan from November to December, and King was due to end on Jan 4th so he’s been recalled 4 days earlier.

    The Preston chairman Maurice Lindsay on SkySports News had nothing bad to say about it, and even said that when their training pitch was frozen, Fergie let them train at Carrington.

    I think this is all blown out of proportion.

  14. This is all very well having a go at Ferguson. There are a few things to take him to task for, but this isn’t one of them. His relationship with his son is important to him. How would this look if he left the three players with Preston after Ferguson Jnr had been sacked.

    There are some critics who’ve pointed out that his motivation has been to help his son rather than develop the young lads. Well, what’s wrong with Darren Ferguson taking advantage of his connections? That’s what being a manager is about. If you have no connections in the game then you are no use to any club.

    Ferguson jnr’s star is most certainly on the wane. He wouldn’t be anywhere in football were it not for his father’s assistance and advice. He was a very poor player who is looking increasingly like a very poor manager. SAF is only supporting his son in a way that only he can. The position of both Fergusons in the game is almost unique and arguably the poor performance in recent times for the younger man is a damning indictment of his abililty. If he can’t do a decent job with his father’s help then it’s time he moved on to some other career. How long before he reappears as a football agent? You heard it here first.

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