• Premier League

Shelvey: Fergie grassed me up

ESPN staff
September 23, 2012 « Snedeker scoops $11.4m jackpot | Chartbeat test »

Sir Alex Ferguson invited Jonjo Shelvey to apologise to him after the Liverpool man appeared to verbally attack the Manchester United manager following his sending-off in Sunday's 2-1 victory for the Red Devils, and Shelvey has responded by accusing the United boss of "grassing him up".

Shelvey was dismissed close to half-time after he lunged in with both feet off the floor on Jonny Evans. Ferguson was up off his seat gesticulating, and referee Mark Halsey responded with a red card.

As the Liverpool midfielder made his way off the pitch he then shouted in the direction of Ferguson, before being led down the tunnel. Down to 10 men, Liverpool took the lead through Steven Gerrard but were overturned by Rafael da Silva and Robin van Persie.

"It was a clear red card, it was dangerous, I don't think he went for the ball," Ferguson told Sky Sports. "Jonny Evans went for the ball, got the ball, and there was no other decision the ref could have given.

"He was trying to blame me I suppose!" Ferguson said of Shelvey's reaction. "He can apologise if he likes. He should do that, he's responsible for his own actions."

Shelvey later responded on Twitter: "I apologise to the fans for getting sent off but no way was I pulling out of that tackle in a game of that importance. I'm sorry. I have also apologised to Sir Alex, just where I come from people don't grass people up to get someone sent off."

Asked if Evans should also have been sent off for the same incident, in which he too left the ground with two feet, Ferguson replied: "Jonny went for the ball, he got the ball, that's the important thing. The other lad didn't attempt to go for the ball."

The United boss was far from happy with his side's display despite the victory, which came after lengthy spells of Liverpool pressure.

"It's a great result for us but we didn't play well. First half, Liverpool dominated us. I was disappointed with our performance. It was better second half but they had ten men, so we can't take credit for that.

"It's been the same the last four years when we've come here, so we're pleased with the result but not the performance. I expect better of them."

Asked what was said at half-time, Ferguson simply replied: "You don't want to know."

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