Chelsea & Man Utd in fight probe

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Chelsea & Man Utd in fight probe Empty Chelsea & Man Utd in fight probe

Post by sulehri on Mon Apr 28, 2008 11:51 am

Chelsea & Man Utd in fight probe _44605716_evrapacredit226

The Football Association has requested CCTV footage of a scuffle involving Manchester United players and Chelsea staff at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.

Patrice Evra, Gary Neville, Ji-Sung Park and Paul Scholes were warming down after a 2-1 loss when they were asked to move by groundstaff, sparking a row.

The row reportedly started after Evra felt he was subject to racist abuse.

"We will obviously be asking Chelsea to let us see their CCTV footage of the incident," said an FA spokesman.

"This will have nothing to do with the referee's report."

The spokesman explained that referee Alan Wiley would have been in his dressing room, a long way from the incident

Both clubs say they will look at footage before deciding on any action.

There are varying reports about the incident, being dubbed the "Battle at the Bridge".

Manchester United players accused Chelsea staff of provoking the brawl.

Striker Carlos Tevez is quoted in the Guardian claiming team-mate Evra was subject to a "grave insult".

The Argentine added: "He demanded an explanation and, from that moment, these men just wanted to attack Patrice.

Chelsea & Man Utd in fight probe _44605844_ferdinandpa226

"I think that the security cameras will show the provocation we received. I have never seen anything like this in my career... if the FA opens an investigation, we will co-operate and happily give our version of what happened."

The Mirror reports that United have distanced themselves from any claims of racist abuse following a phone conversation between their chief executive David Gill and his Chelsea counterpart Peter Kenyon.

Meanwhile, United's Rio Ferdinand apologised to a steward after accidently kicking her following Michael Ballack's late penalty winner.

Ferdinand lashed out at a brick wall as he walked off the pitch but also made contact with a female steward.

"Unfortunately, a lady was stood by and I accidentally brushed her with my foot. I apologised profusely and went back to make sure she was OK," he said.

"I have arranged for a bouquet of flowers to be sent to her.

"Credit to her, she laughed it off and was very understanding. She said she wasn't hurt."

Minutes earlier Ferdinand was involved in a shoving match with fellow England captaincy contender John Terry and Chelsea's John Mikel Obi.

Ferdinand was infuriated by referee Alan Wiley's decision to award the late penalty, given on the advice of an assistant referee, for a Michael Carrick handball, that Michael Ballack converted to give Chelsea victory.

It brought the Blues level on points with United at the top of the Premier League with two games remaining, with United enjoying a superior goal difference by 16.

Nothing will be decided in the title race now until at least Monday, 5 May, when Chelsea travel to Newcastle, two days after United host West Ham.

If United beat the Hammers, Chelsea will need at least a point at St James' Park to ensure the race goes to the final day, when the Blues host relegation-threatened Bolton and United travel to Wigan.

Before the resumption of Premier League hostilities, United and Chelsea play the second leg of their Champions League semi-finals, against Barcelona and Liverpool respectively, this week.

United are hoping defender Nemanja Vidic and striker Wayne Rooney will be fit for Tuesday's return fixture at Old Trafford, after a 0-0 draw in the first leg in Barcelona.

Serbian centre-back Vidic was forced off early on at Stamford Bridge with a facial injury following a challenge for the ball with Didier Drogba, while England star Rooney departed with a hip problem, after scoring the equaliser.

Boss Sir Alex Ferguson said: "Vidic has a few stitches under his lip and he's lost a tooth.

"He was dazed rather than concussed but if we'd waited for him to come round we would have played 10 or 15 minutes with 10 men and you can't afford that in such a big game. So we had to take him off.

"Rooney's got the same knock as he got last week, straight on the hip bone. It takes a while for that to clear because when you get a bang on it, it's very painful. I'm hopeful he will be all right for Tuesday."

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