The Independent claims Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson will likely be ‘furious’ after the Football Association entered in to a ‘state of open conflict’ with the Red Devils boss, charging him over comments made about the linesman after United’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham Hotspur.
Ferguson has until Friday to officially respond to the charge and or launch an appeal against the decision.
Ferguson told United fans to beware that the team will ‘drop points’ over the course of the remaining 15 games this season.
“Teams will drop points. Not just us but Manchester City will drop points, absolutely, it’s a certainty,” he asserted.
United host Southampton at Old Trafford this evening at 8pm. In team news, Nick Powell has resumed full training and is likely to make the bench for the fixture.
Ashley Young and Jonny Evans are unlikely to feature as they are still recovering from knee and hamstring injuries, respectively. The predicted line up is as follows:
De Gea – Rafael – Ferdinand – Vidic – Evra – Valencia – Jones – Carrick – Nani – Van Persie – Rooney
Meanwhile, new Saints boss Mauricio Pochettino has hailed the ‘professionalism’ of United veterans Paul Scholes and Rio Ferdinand.
“I am not surprised by their professionalism and how they have maintained themselves over the years,” said the Argentine.
“I know they are amazing athletes, they take care of their bodies and their fitness.”
United new boy Shinji Kagawa has paid tribute to United’s fans, citing their support as the source of his inspiration.
“The feeling of unity between the supporters and players is incredible. Those moments encourage the players and make us feel like we can score another goal at any time,” revealed the midfielder.
United vice-captain Patrice Evra has backed young Dutch defender Alexander Buttner, despite the pair’s competition for the same position at left-back.
"I always try to help Alex because I am a United player, not just Patrice Evra. I want the benefit for the team. If it’s me that is playing well or Alex Büttner, I will be happy,” explained the Frenchman.
Meanwhile, midfield maestro Anderson has outlined the team’s desire to win the FA Cup, pointing to the team’s failure to win the trophy in the last 9 seasons.
“Rio's been here for ten years and he hasn't won the FA Cup. It's important for everyone,” he revealed.
In transfer news, there is continuing speculation that United will put in a late bid for Celtic youngster Victor Wanyama before the transfer deadline tomorrow. According to sources the club is lining up an £8 million offer for the Kenyan international.
Young United defender Luke McCullough has joined Cheltenham Town on a month-long temporary loan deal.
This comes as United have extended the trial of young Leicester City forward Jeff Schlupp, to continue their assessment of whether or not he has a future at the club.
United may now face competition from Charlton who are also looking into the possibility of a move for Schlupp.