English Premiership

Fergie vows to make amends

2010-08-21 06:43
Looking for revenge

London - Sir Alex Ferguson has backed Mark Hughes to become a success at Fulham, but has told his former player there is no chance of a shock win over Manchester United on Sunday.

Ferguson will be looking to banish the painful memories of United's last two trips to Fulham when they visit Craven Cottage this weekend.

United crashed to a 3-0 defeat at Fulham last season, when Ferguson's injury problems were so bad he had to field midfielders Darren Fletcher and Michael Carrick in a makeshift defence, having lost 2-0 there the season before.

Now Ferguson is relishing the chance for revenge, even though he believes Hughes, a player who served him well at Old Trafford, has the ability to continue the progress Roy Hodgson made at the London club before joining Liverpool.

Ferguson said: "We have had a bit of a tough time at Fulham. We were down to nine men and then last season we had just gone too far with the makeshift players who had played at the back.

"That is the key to it when you put out fragile teams with players out of position -- when you lose a goal it becomes very difficult. We became fragmented despite starting very well.

"But Mark (Hughes) had a small squad at Blackburn and his experience there should be ideal for Fulham.

"You could say they are similar clubs in terms of size. Fulham almost created a miracle with a small squad last season.

"They played 59 matches starting in July and ended up in May in Hamburg (in the Europa League final). It was quite a phenomenon.

"I think the thing that helped them was that the games came so thick and fast that they didn't have time to think about it.

"They just pulled the jersey on and played. They couldn't have done much training because it was a small squad that needed to keep its freshness.

"It was quite a season for them and it won't happen again, I am sure of that."

Hughes would love nothing more than to secure a victory over United in his first home game in charge since succeeding Hodgson.

Fulham's preparations for the match, however, have been overshadowed by Hughes's attempts to keep Australia goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer out of the clutches of Arsenal.

Schwarzer is doubtful with a back problem but Hughes is desperate to keep him at Craven Cottage and said a second bid from Arsenal has been rejected.

Hughes said: "Mark still has a problem with his back and he didn't train on Friday but we hope he will be available Sunday.

"There was an offer but it wasn't an improved offer -- it was the same as the one put forward in May, so that situation has not moved on because there has been contact but no improvement.

"There are plenty of things agents and managers can do to unsettle players -- obviously Mark is aware of the interest from Arsenal, and that's disrupting and a distraction.

"But there has been no improved offer and we would not encourage one."

Hughes could target Shay Given should Schwarzer secure a move to the Emirates Stadium, but Hughes added: "He's a talented keeper who I know very well, but he's a Manchester City player and it's not in my interests to discuss other people's players."

NEXT ON SPORT24X

 

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
2 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Fixtures
19 April 2014
Tottenham Hotspur v Fulham, White Hart Lane 13:45
West Ham United v Crystal Palace, Boleyn Ground 16:00
Cardiff City v Stoke City, Cardiff City Stadium 16:00
Newcastle United v Swansea City, St. James' Park 16:00
Aston Villa v Southampton, Villa Park 16:00
Chelsea v Sunderland, Stamford Bridge 18:30
20 April 2014
Norwich City v Liverpool, Carrow Road 13:00
Hull City v Arsenal, The KC Stadium 15:05
Everton v Manchester United, Goodison Park 17:10
21 April 2014
Manchester City v West Bromwich Albion, Etihad Stadium 21:00
Logs
Team P W PTS
Previous Results

Date Home Team Result Away Team
Vote

Which team do you think will win the English Premiership?

 
 
Featured Blog

The stock of Bulls and Sharks 2014 Super Rugby jerseys are slowly becoming available after the festive season break, writes blogger Baylion.

Latest blogs
 

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

TV schedule Plan your couch time with our searchable sport TV guide

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

 
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.