Football: Ferguson's book angers Gascoigne

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The Independent Online
PAUL GASCOIGNE has joined the growing band upset by Sir Alex Ferguson's autobiography, Managing My Life. The Middlesbrough player's adviser, Mel Stein, yesterday criticised Ferguson for a passage in the book.

The offending section - "the explanation of the late switch was said to be that Paul's feelings were swung when Tottenham bought a house for his parents" - concerns Gascoigne's decision to change his mind and leave Newcastle for Tottenham rather than United.

Ferguson goes on to criticise the advice the player was given, writing: "I wonder if his advisers ever consider what a boob they made, taking a lad of Paul's background and temperament to London."

Gascoigne's parents did have a house bought for them in Dunston on Tyneside, but that was believed to be a gesture from their son, and Stein said: "I have read the passage. There are lots of things that are wrong. We will have to put the record straight in Paul's autobiography next year. I can't disclose what was in my client's contract. All I can say is that there are some substantial inaccuracies in Alex Ferguson's version of the transfer.

"He obviously has a selective memory. Maybe he honestly believes that's what happened. Maybe his memory is worse than mine. I don't have to rely on mine, however, as I am a solicitor and everything is down in writing. I know exactly what happened."

Gascoigne and Stein are not considering legal action, but have joined the queue of complainants. "There are lots of people I know who are up in arms about various parts of the book," Stein said. "I just tend to shrug it off and move on."

Among others, Ferguson's former assistant at Old Trafford, Brian Kidd, has also been criticised, and the Blackburn Rovers manager is believed to be seeking legal advice. However, Kidd is unlikely to pursue the matter any further despite Ferguson's allegations that he undermined him during his time as Old Trafford No 2.