Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 17 April 2014

Alan Green: Nothing golden about handshakes

Should you shake hands or refuse to?

The Football Association stepped in before QPR played Chelsea the other Sunday — Rangers’ players had already made it known they wouldn’t shake hands with the opposing captain — and any awkwardness was removed from Stamford Bridge the other day when John Terry’s knee injury prevented him playing against United. Rio Ferdinand didn’t have to decide what to do.

But I find the whole business ridiculous.

It was interesting to hear Sir Alex Ferguson’s response when asked (prior to knowledge of Terry’s injury) what Ferdinand should do.

Fergie was typically forthright: there’s nothing wrong in shaking someone’s hand provided it’s understood what might happen once the whistle is blown i.e. players are quite likely to kick lumps out of one another!

It’ll apply to Evra/Suarez on Saturday.

Too right: so why bother with handshakes as a prelude to any game? The authorities mistakenly believe it displays respect towards an opponent.

No, all it does is add another layer of hypocrisy. Scrap it!

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