Manchester United manager relieved after Fulham penalty decision
Manchester United are three points clear of Manchester City at the top of the Premier League, although the gap could be just a solitary point if Michael Oliver had pointed to the spot in the final minute of the game.
March 27th, 2012
Michael Carrick’s clumsy challenge on Danny Murphy saw the Fulham players appeal in vain as the referee waved play on, although later replays confirmed that the visitors should have been awarded a spot kick.
Sir Alex Ferguson was certainly breathing a huge sigh of relief in the dug-out as his side strode clear of City, admitting Fulham had a case.
“They had a claim,” he said.
“But the referee was a bit lenient when we had a claim for a penalty in the first-half for handball. Patrice Evra thought it was a stone-waller.
“Maybe that has swayed the referee because Michael Carrick caught Danny Murphy’s heel as he came back and it could have been a penalty.”
Naturally, Martin Jol was aggrieved that his team didn’t get the spot kick although the Dutchman kept his calm despite missing out on a potential point.
“No-one in the stadium could say Danny Murphy dived and everyone in the stadium expected a penalty,” said Jol.
“A few years ago, the ball was a metre over the line and they did not give it. Maybe the linesman was not quick enough that time.
“But tonight the referee was there in line. It needed a brave decision because it was either a dive and he should book someone or he has to give Carrick a red card.
“I don’t want to see Carrick sent off but it needed a brave decision and I think it was a penalty kick.”