Sunday, 10 February 2008

Touchy Fergie!

I know I'm supposed to take one game at a time, but I can't help looking forwards a couple of weeks to the return to The Racecourse of Darren Ferguson!

It would have been quite an event in itself, but after what happened a fortnight ago at London Road, I can't wait! We added Ferguson to our list of hard-nut managers we've annoyed as he followed Paul Ince's lead with what can only be described as a strop after the match.

Before I continue my diatribe I must inject some perspective. Ferguson is one of the greatest players ever to play for Wrexham and was perfectly entitled to be disappointed that the offer to manage us was not forthcoming. None of that excuses his comically petulant behaviour yesterday though!

Basically, before the game Fergie tried to play mind games like his Dad does, but they didn't work. He might have succeeded in getting under the skins of a few people previously, but Brian Little's sang froid looks a terribly difficult thing to disturb.

He might have expected us to roll over and die for him again, but we weren't willing to make a birthday present of the match to him this time!

Ferguson was furious last November that comments he'd made had been interpreted as an attack on Brian Carey, but his remarks in the lead-up to the goalless draw made me wonder how badly he'd been misrepresented. They suggested that he has learned how to stir things up before a game from his Dad. All week he'd claimed that he knew what would happen in the match. They'd play all the football and we'd just lump it long. Oddly enough he stuck to that line after the game, despite the fact that we'd played a lot of good football. Didn't Rooster's scouting tell him that Roberts can pass the ball, or that Sonner is the closest thing we've had to Ferguson since the genuine article left?

Ferguson emerged for the press conference with a black cloud spewing out thunder just above his head. Having already kicked the ball onto the prostrate Chris Llewellyn's head and mouthed at Steve Evans and Neil Roberts during the match, quite apart from any argy-bargy in the tunnel he might have involved himself in, he was still in a state of high dudgeon. As questions were asked of him he ground his teeth furiously, his temples throbbing. His answers always came back to one thing; how we played and how he'd known all along that was exactly what we'd do! Well he knew everything we were going to do beforehand why on earth didn't he come up with an effective strategy to combat it?

Perhaps it was also the Ferguson family instinct for self-preservation kicking in when he focussed so squarely on the incident between Steve Evans and their goalkeeper. After all, it was only once United's adrenaline got pumping and the crowd woke up following the altercation that they actually injected some tempo into their game and started to look threatening. Ferguson's tactical preparations had managed to make his side look second best to a side which would end the game bottom of League Two for the first seventy-five minutes. No wonder he looked to deflect attention from the first hour and a quarter of the game!

Just like seeing Paul Ince stomp off after we beat MK Dons, it was highly amusing to see us get under the skin of someone who loves to do that to others. Fergie was a legend; maybe he would have been a great manager for us, but he'll lose a lot of friends if he continues like this. But then that's not why he's in the game.

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