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Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson weighs up misconduct response

Updated: Wednesday, 30 Jan 2013 07:35 | Comments

Alex Ferguson is in the dock
Alex Ferguson is in the dock

Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson has until Friday afternoon to decide whether to contest his FA misconduct charge.

Ferguson said last week he thought the issue was personal after the FA asked for his 'observations' of post-match comments about assistant referee Simon Beck at Tottenham on January 20.

Evidently, the FA has decided there is a case for Ferguson to answer, leaving the Scot to work out whether he should fight his corner, in the belief his comments amount to little more than criticism of a poor performance, or accept his punishment.

The United boss received notification of his charge yesterday evening, 24 hours ahead of his side's Barclays Premier League encounter with a Southampton side still coming to terms with the shock exit of Nigel Adkins.

As someone who has played a professional career now approaching its 22nd anniversary under the guidance of one man, Ryan Giggs is not the most obvious person to ask about Adkins' dismissal.

Yet Giggs would have to exist in a bubble to not appreciate the wacky world football has become and some of the seemingly strange decisions that are made in the name of progress.

And he realises players tend to be an expedient bunch.

"Players just get on with it," he said.

"Everyone was shocked when Nigel Adkins went, but ultimately players have got a job to do.

"The new manager will put his ideas across and players will just get on with it."

Thus far, Mauricio Pochettino has only had one game to deal with, which resulted in a home draw against Everton.

Of far more significance to Giggs is that result being part of a run which has seen the Saints go six Premier League games unbeaten, and lose two of their last 13, which has been enough to haul themselves out of the relegation zone and edge away from trouble.

The warning will be enough to trigger the return of 22-goal Robin van Persie, who sat out Saturday's FA Cup win over Fulham but is looking for a new personal landmark of scoring in six consecutive league matches.

In addition central defensive duo Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand are also set to be recalled as United defend their record of never losing to the Saints in a league match at Old Trafford since 1988, when Colin Clarke did the damage, grabbing both goals in a 2-0 win.

"It will be another tough game for us," said Giggs.

"I suppose you could say there are no easy games in this league but Southampton have been in decent form and gave us a good game earlier in the season, so we'll need to play well.

"You want to perform well for your satisfaction and your own form. It also gives you confidence going into the next game."

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