‘T-shirt gate’ has supposedly ended overnight, with reports suggesting that Sir Alex Ferguson and Rio Ferdinand have sat down to settle the disagreement between themselves.
The Daily Mail has reported overnight that Rio Ferdinand will not be fined, after other reports had suggested that he would be fined two weeks wages after refusing to wear a Kick It Out warm up t-shirt ahead of Saturday’s game against Stoke City. Sir Alex Ferguson made his dissapointment with Ferdinand public, having stated in his press conference on Friday that all United’s players would be wearing the t-shirts, stating that the club would, “deal with it”.
Ferdinand’s protest came in light of the handling of John Terry following his decision not to appeal the FA’s decision to ban him for four matches after they had found him guilty of racially abusing Rio’s brother, Anton.
Anton Ferdinand also refused to wear the t-shirt, as did five of his teammates, who were also joined by Reading’s Jason Roberts, who stated publicly that he would not join in the campaign as he felt it was ineffectual, urging others to join him in his protest.
With so many players refusing to take part, Sir Alex would have found it hard to justify such a hefty fine, particularly given it would have matched the fine handed to John Terry by Chelsea for being found guilty of racial abuse.
The Daily Mail’s report suggests that Sir Alex was unhappy that Ferdinand had failed to notify Sir Alex of his cause before his press conference on Friday, which made it seem that Ferdinand had directly contradicted his manager.
The report quotes a ‘United source’ as having said, “Rio wanted to make it clear that he wasn’t deliberately trying to ignore his manager’s instructions while the manager just said he ought to have been told in advance.”