• Premier League

Ferguson unfazed by penalty controversy

ESPN staff
March 29, 2012

Sir Alex Ferguson has shrugged off the controversy that followed Manchester United's 1-0 win over Fulham on Monday.

A Wayne Rooney goal secured three points for United, but Fulham felt they should have been awarded a late penalty for what appeared a foul on Danny Murphy.

The debate was thrown back into the mix on Wednesday when Manchester City's Patrick Vieira suggested big clubs like United often get key decisions.

The mind games have kicked off between the two title-chasing sides in recent weeks, but the controversy has not fazed Ferguson.

At his press conference on Thursday, Ferguson said: "It was an interesting game on Monday night. It showed how teams are determined to stick to their job and defend well. From the referee's position I can see why the Murphy penalty wasn't given because the ball moved at an angle. We could have had a penalty ourselves.

The ball moved to the angle as Michael Carrick challenged him. From that position, it wasn't clear. It was a good claim but City could have had a penalty against them at Stoke for a foul by Gareth Barry.

"Every club gets breaks here and there, you get good ones and bad ones. It evens itself out over the season, that will never change.

"You get breaks here and there - good and bad. They even themselves out. We've had some terrible decisions at Old Trafford - look at the Newcastle game. [Against City] Tottenham had a claim when Balotelli wasn't sent off... Someone said United don't get penalties at Old Trafford - but the average over the last 20 years or so is only about three a season or something like that. Most managers believe the breaks even themselves out.

"Maybe smaller clubs feel that (decisions go against them when they play big clubs) but someone said some years ago that we get lots of penalties. It is only averaging out at three a year.

"You can't say that is a lot when you are attacking teams all the time.

"Most managers believe the breaks even themselves out."

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