Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 2 October 2014

Anger after Alex Ferguson calls for reporter to be banned

Sir Alex Ferguson

Sir Alex Ferguson’s attempt to have a reporter banned from a Champions League press conference is unlikely to succeed.

Yesterday the Manchester United manager was recorded by a Sky News mic telling a press officer to ban Rob Harris of the Associated Press after he had asked an innocuous question about the Red Devils’ scandal-hit winger Ryan Giggs.

But Lou Ferrara, AP's managing editor of sport, retorted: “Rob Harris was doing his job as a journalist by asking a question.

“Our expectation is that he'll ask more questions — and be afforded the ability to do so as he covers the world's most popular sport.”

And a United spokesman admitted last night: “I don't think we can ban him.”

Ferguson is, of course, no stranger to clashing with reporters at Old Trafford, but his latest spat happened at a Uefa sanctioned media event.

And the United boss is required by Uefa regulations to give a pre-final media conferences on Friday — the one he wants Harris banned from.

Giggs was named in the House of Commons on Monday as the footballer alleged to have had an extra-marital affair with the model, Imogen Thomas.

His ‘outing’ in the run-up to Saturday night’s Champions League final with Barcelona has infuriated Ferguson, but now the veteran manager appears to have inadvertently exacerbated the tension within the United camp.

Read more and watch video: Giggs question riles Fergie

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