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Ferguson fumes at lack of injury time

ESPN staff
September 29, 2012 « Nadal: 'Fantastic' Murray has got it all | Chartbeat test »

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson said he was insulted by the lack of injury time during his side's 3-2 defeat to Tottenham on Saturday.

Goals from Jan Vertonghen, Gareth Bale and Clint Dempsey steered Spurs to their first win at Old Trafford in 23 years, but Ferguson was left fuming at the referee - feeling that four minutes of stoppage time was insufficient.

United have a history of scoring last-gasp winners at Old Trafford, but they were unable to salvage anything from the game as Tottenham hung on for a famous victory after Nani and Shinji Kagawa had clawed United back into the match.

"It was disappointing because the record has been fantastic," Ferguson told BBC Sport. "They gave us four minutes, that's an insult to the game. It denies you a proper chance to win a football match.

"There were six substitutions, the trainer came on, so that's four minutes right away and the goalkeeper must have wasted about two or three minutes and they took their time at every goal kick.

"That's obvious to everyone today and it's a flaw in the game that the referee is responsible for time keeping. It's ridiculous that it's 2012 and the referee still has control of that."

Ferguson was left to rue a slow start from his side, who found themselves 2-0 down at half-time.

"It was quite a game," Ferguson told ESPN. "The first half we never started, didn't get into the game. From there we were just playing against the wind. The second half we played fantastic, just trying to get something from the game, and I think we were very unlucky.

"I think the attitude changed, that was the important thing. Wayne's [Rooney] ability does help but the attitude of the players was excellent everywhere on the pitch."

United had a host of penalty appeals turned down, with both their goalscorers going down under challenges in the area and handball shouts against both Sandro and William Gallas.

"There were quite a few," said Ferguson. "I think the one in the first half was a clear penalty kick, but maybe Nani made a meal of it and he didn't need to do that. He was clearly pulled back. The ones in the second half, I'm not so sure."

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