The Swansea City defender Ashley Williams insisted that he had tried to apologize to Robin van Persie for an unintentional clearance into his head which left a furious Sir Alex Ferguson declaring that the player was a "disgrace" and that he could have broken the Dutchman's neck.
"It is his opinion," Williams said. "I obviously cleared the ball and it hit him on the head. I understand why he is angry. I tried to apologize but there wasn't much time. I didn't see him afterwards and obviously I would shake his hand [if I had the chance] but it is no big deal. I just lashed at the ball and I understand why he is angry but it is not like I am going to shoot and hit him square on the head."
Ferguson's fury compounded his feelings of injustice on an afternoon when he alluded to 27-year-old referee Michael Oliver's youth in condemnation of his officiating. Ferguson implied that Williams should have been sent off after his 74th-minute clearance struck the grounded striker in a crowded area, as United pushed for a winner. "Robin van Persie is lucky to be alive. It was a disgraceful act from their player today and he should be banned by the FA," the United manager said. "Robin could have had a broken neck." Ferguson also felt that there had been a foul on one of his players in the build-up to Michu's equalizing goal, for which his defence left the striker unmarked to score.