Fergie fumes at FA over Young
Manchester - Sir Alex Ferguson, the Manchester United manager, is angry with the Football Association for revealing that winger Ashley Young has a knee injury that will rule him out of action for club and country for the next two weeks.
The FA named their latest England squad, for forthcoming internationals against Moldova and the Ukraine, on Thursday and left Young out of Roy Hodgson's group.
In doing so, they also explained that Young has a knee injury, a revelation that has angered Ferguson who believes it has given Southampton, whom United were scheduled to play on Sunday, a competitive advantage.
"It was nice of the FA to let everyone know that Ashley Young is injured," said Ferguson. "There is no point giving them any information now.
"He's out, he got a knee injury last week, although it's not serious. Obviously, he will be ready for a couple of weeks' time."
Ferguson failed to explain how the FA are supposed to omit a player from their squad without explaining the reasons behind it, but his reaction serves as the latest example of the poor relations between the veteran manager and the game's ruling body.
Meanwhile, Ferguson has received better news over the progress of the Scotland international midfielder Darren Fletcher whose career looked in jeopardy last season when he was diagnosed with a debilitating bowel disease.
Ferguson seems certain to name the 28-year-old in his 25-man squad for the Champions' League, something he can easily do as he has enough vacant positions in the party because of the UEFA rule that means clubs do not need to register players who have spent the required time in an academy system.
Fletcher, out for 10 months, played in a pre-season friendly for the first team at Aberdeen, has twice played with United under-21 teams in recent weeks and is also set to travel to Scotland to join up with the national team squad, as part of his rehabilitation, this week.
"We haven't finalised that yet," said Ferguson of his Champions League squad. "We're looking at that but there are a few players we don't need to register because of the time they spent with us as an academy player so we've got that advantage.
"There are 25 players that have to be registered and he comes into that quite easily without leaving others out.
"The first thing to mention is he has put weight back on now, he's back to his normal weight from two-three years ago. He's training well every day. He went up to Scotland the last trip and I think he's going up again, just as an experience thing, just to be there.
"He played the other night and did really well but I don't know where he's at, to be honest with you. With the condition he has, and has to deal with, it's wait and see. If he keeps doing as well as he's doing then he will come into contention because he's a fantastic player."
One player who does not have a future with Ferguson's club, however, is the Bulgarian international forward Dimitar Berbatov, signed for 30.75 million from Tottenham, four years ago.
Berbatov was in talks with interested clubs, led by Fulham, during the final week of the transfer window with the player poised to leave Old Trafford, with the United manager's blessing.
"He's a very talented player, a really, really talented player," said Ferguson.
"His contribution was good, particularly in home games, that was his strongest point. He's the only player to have scored a hat-trick against Liverpool for United.
"But I think there was a time we changed our game, that probably didn't suit him. We started playing with more speed, teams were getting in quickly to organise against us so therefore we had to change the way we wanted to play and that didn't suit Dimitar.
"But he's a very talented player and wherever he goes, he will do well."