Fergie appears to be still hurting over City loss
"My attitude is to completely forget it. It never happened," Sir Alex Ferguson said yesterday but the residual effects of the day he has described as "the worst result in my history – ever" were written all across his face.
The Manchester United manager tends to bound with vim and vigour into the first press conference after a catastrophe like the 6-1 derby defeat and, though there was a promise that events at Everton today will "show Manchester United in our proper light", he lacked the fight to deal with the fact that United have conceded more shots on goal than any other Premier League side this season: 168. "I can't deny your stats but we know about them. We're aware of that," the manager said. "We can analyse [the defeat] as much as we want but it's not going to do us any good."
There are more hospitable places to rebuild than Goodison, where United have not won since 2007 and where, with Wayne Rooney's state of marital strife equipping home fans with chants of "No woman, no Kai" (a reference to his child) a year ago, Ferguson rested the striker for his own protection. "You know what fans are like. He's a traitor as far as they're concerned," Ferguson admitted. Rooney has not scored against Everton since April 2007, though he is unlikely to be rested again. The wig jokes will be aired.
Ferguson reflected on the last time United conceded six goals, October 1986, and he remembered how the club went on and "won the league by 10 or 11 points". It was by seven points, actually, and that was a side containing Roy Keane, Eric Cantona and David Beckham.
Now the weight of expectation in midfield rests with Tom Cleverley, the 22-year-old with four Premier League starts under his belt, though Ferguson did not agree that expectations were too high. "He's got the potential," Ferguson added.
As anti-Semitic attacks rise, Grant Feller re-evaluates his identity
Kirstie Allsopp has waded into the female fertility debate again
...and it wasn't caused by an asteroid crash, as first thought
Savoury patisserie is a thing now
Gillian Anderson lays into gender disparity in Hollywood
Latest in Sport
Arsene Wenger 18th anniversary at Arsenal: His WORST signings XI during his time with the Gunners
Arsene Wenger's worst signings XI
Colombian women's cycling team kit that makes wearer appear naked is branded 'unacceptable' by UCI president
Nani: On loan Sporting Lisbon winger admits he may not return to Manchester United
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates
- 1 Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
- 2 Prince held a Facebook Q&A and this is the only question he answered...
- 3 35,000 walrus gather on north-west Alaska beach 'for a rest'
- 4 Brad Pitt, on the moment he completely lost his temper with Clint Eastwood's son
- 5 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
Former Tory donor Arron Banks ups his Ukip donation to £1million following William Hague 'nobody' comment
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so