Sir Alex On Touchline Ban, Avram Grant and Portsmouth

Today Man United manager Sir Alex Ferguson will serve the first of two touchline bans. Sir Alex is worried that the Portsmouth fans could drown out his efforts to communicate with his staff.

Sports - November 06, 2007

Sir Alex was given a two-match ban after his comments about referee Alan Wiley being ‘unfit’ to referee the game.

"All the lines of communication are in place but the problem you have got is that Fratton Park is such a noisy place,'' Ferguson said. "The directors' box is towards the home end where all the noise comes from. It is a good racket for sure. It is a terrific football stadium.''

Sir Alex went on to talk about Avram Grant. The last time Sir Alex and Avram went head-to-head was in the Champions League final when Chelsea lost on penalties. Shortly after that, Grant was sacked.

"Sometimes you don't understand everything in football,'' Ferguson said. "Getting to the final of the European Cup was an achievement. Chelsea were within one penalty kick of winning it and they also finished second in the league."

"But it might have been the fact that someone else has come onto the horizon. They might have looked upon it as progress to get a different manager in. Nonetheless, it was disappointing for Avram, having achieved what he did. But he has never shown any bitterness. He has got on with his life.''

Portsmouth have had some good performances this season but they haven’t had the luck, Sir Alex was quick to point it out.

"Portsmouth have some very good players,'' Sir Alex added. "I have looked at their videos and they may be in a false position. But being bottom of the league does create a reaction from owners and management of a club."

"It doesn't matter which club it is, when you have a change of ownership there will be a certain amount of disruption. You get new policies coming in, or there might be a new financial outlook. You can see how it can have an effect on the pitch. And owners of a club don't like to see their team at the bottom of the league. That is the danger position."

"If you are third or fourth bottom you think everything will be okay. But when you see your team going bottom it creates a dread about where they are going to be next season.''

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