Alex Ferguson: I would have taken a draw against Manchester City
Manchester United manager was ready to settle after seeing two goal lead evaporate
Monday 10 December 2012
Sir Alex Ferguson would have been happy to accept a draw before Robin van Persie gave Manchester United a priceless victory at the Etihad Stadium.
In front of Tom Cruise, Wayne Rooney had become United's Manchester derby Top Gun with his first-half brace.
It made him the Red Devils' most prolific scorer in clashes against City, in addition to confirming him as only the sixth - and youngest - player to reach 150 Premier League goals.
But when Yaya Toure and Pablo Zabaleta turned the contest on its head, Ferguson admitted he would have been delighted with a point.
"You have to give credit to City," said the United boss.
"They kept fighting and battling.
"They have this great record of scoring goals and when they got the second I thought, 'I will take the draw'."
Van Persie had other ideas, adding to his already impressive reputation by scoring his 14th goal of the season to ease United six points clear.
"It got a little deflection but it was a terrific hit," said Ferguson. "His whole game was fantastic. He has kept them on the back foot."
United's day would have been made easier had Ashley Young's goal been allowed to stand when he tucked home the rebound to a Van Persie shot which cannoned off the post.
Instead it was incorrectly ruled out for offside which, had the result not turned out the way it did, would surely have triggered a far less phlegmatic reaction from Ferguson.
"It was disappointing because from 3-0 up it went to 2-1 in minutes," said Ferguson.
"Football can kick you in the teeth that way but there will always be controversy in a match like that because there are so many things happening."
Ferguson believes United's present advantage may be needed later in the season given City are now without any European distractions.
He was well pleased with his side's efforts though, the only downside coming with the hamstring injury sustained by Jonny Evans.
"He got it in the first half after a challenge with Mario Balotelli," said Ferguson.
"He played on but I always think whilst you can get through the first half, once you try to start the second after cooling down it is a problem.
"I thought he would come off."
Meanwhile, full-back Patrice Evra has rejected rumours of a potential move to Paris St-Germain in the summer.
"You will have to kill Ferguson before I can move to PSG," Evra told Canal+. "There is nothing done."
Latest in Sport
Chelsea victory parade: Chelsea mocked on Twitter as 'tens of fans' pack the streets of London
Jack Wilshere's final-day strike wins Match of the Day's Goal of the Season award after Arsenal fans hijack vote
Young Preston fan has play-off hero Jermaine Beckford's shirt stolen from him at Wembley - which then appears for sale on Gumtree
Chelsea victory parade: Fans chuck celery at Sky News presenter ahead of champion's parade through London
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers safe for now as owners target signings - with £20m Christian Benteke top of list
- 1 Cyclist who knocked down three-year-old girl says his life has been 'destroyed'
- 2 Chelsea victory parade: Chelsea mocked on Twitter as 'tens of fans' pack the streets of London
- 3 US warned by Chinese media to stop meddling or 'war will be inevitable'
- 4 Woman, 21, dies after taking contraceptive pill that 'caused fatal blood clot'
- 5 Isis burns woman alive for refusing to engage in 'extreme' sex act, UN says
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people