Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 10 July 2014

Fergie: Derby is fantastic prospect

Sir Alex Ferguson

Sir Alex Ferguson cannot wait for Sunday's Barclays Premier League derby showdown with leaders Manchester City.

Ferguson's Manchester United side were not too convincing against Romanian title winners Otelul Galati in Bucharest on Wednesday night, yet even without skipper Nemanja Vidic - sent off in the second half - United emerged victorious thanks to two Wayne Rooney penalties.

The result moved United into second spot behind Benfica in Group C, with all eyes immediately turning to the league clash with their city rivals at Old Trafford. Ferguson told Sky Sports: "The last couple of years they [the derbies] have become more intense and there is more importance attached to them."

He added: "On Sunday it's top of the league and second-top, and it really builds up into a fantastic prospect for everyone. I am looking forward to that."

Vidic will spend the build-up worrying whether UEFA will increase the obligatory one-match ban for his tackle on Gabriel Giurgiu. There did not seem any malice about the challenge and the Serbian was stunned at the red card shown by German referee Felix Byrch.

The official obviously felt there was an element of danger about the tackle, and Ferguson could understand why.

"I've looked at it and his foot is certainly high," said Ferguson.

"I can understand the referee's interpretation of the incident.

"Maybe it's a bit different in Germany, but I thought it was a little harsh. It was certainly a booking."

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