Sir Alex Ferguson escapes FA punishment despite half-time rant at referee Mike Dean

Manchester United manager was furious with overruled decision

Sir Alex Ferguson has escaped punishment from the Football Association despite confronting referee Mike Dean at half-time during Manchester United's 4-3 victory over Newcastle.

The Scot was furious with Dean after he overruled assistant Jake Collin and awarded Newcastle's second goal.

Ferguson was seen to approach Dean as he made his way out for the second half. The Manchester United manager also rounded on fourth official Neil Swarbrick before arguing with assistant Collin.

However the FA have said no action will be taken as Dean made no reference to Ferguson's tirade in his match report.

The incident that so incensed Ferguson was Jonny Evans' 28th minute own goal. Collin had flagged for offside against Newcastle striker Papiss Cisse but Dean overruled the decision.

The Premier League went as far as issuing a clarification, backing Dean's decision, confirming that "as Cisse did not play the ball, then he was not interfering with play".

However, Ferguson saw things differently, arguing after the match: "The referee changed the linesman's mind.

"He said it was an own goal. But if you see it again, and the referee can't, the guy is in an offside position, then he pulls Evans' arm.

"If that is not interfering, what is? I think it was a bad decision."

Dean could have sent Ferguson to the stands during the match, but did not deem the measure necessary.

Evans' own goal saw United trail 2-1 but they were to come back and win the match 4-3, with Javier Hernandez scoring a 90th minute winner.

Rio Ferdinand has demanded United sort their defensive problems out before they start to undermine their season. United have now conceded 28 goals this season, only five fewer than Queen's Park Rangers who are languishing at the foot of the Premier League table.

To put that into context, at the half way point of the campaign, they have now exceeded the number of goals they conceded in three of their most recent title-winning seasons – 2007, 2008 and 2009. In all competitions, that figure now stands at 40, during which time they have kept just four clean sheets. All of which bodes ill for United's Champions League last-16 tie with Real Madrid, and everyone in the United camp admits they must find a solution.

"We are concerned," said Ferdinand. "When you are conceding goals at any level you want to put it to a stop. This season we have let in far too many goals and we need to change that. We need to make a big effort now to push on. We are in a good position but if we are to maintain where we are, we need to sort ourselves out."

Ferdinand's words were echoed by central defensive colleague Evans, who feels it is only a matter of time before United finally resolve their defensive issues. "We know what is going on," he said. "Defending is a mindset. You have to be mentally prepared to defend and want to defend. We have just been concentrating too much on scoring goals. Instead of getting off to good starts we have killed ourselves a little bit by conceding sloppy goals.

"The good thing is we are scoring, which is the hardest part of football. We have been doing that freely so I am sure the more simple part of keeping clean sheets will come."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Frank Turner performing at 93 Feet East
musicReview: 93 Feet East, London
News
Toronto tops the charts across a range of indexes
news

World cities ranked in terms of safety, food security and 'liveability'

Extras
indybest
Voices
A mother and her child
voices
Voices
The veterans Mark Hayward, Hugh Thompson and Sean Staines (back) with Grayson Perry (front left) and Evgeny Lebedev
charity appealMaverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee