Wigan 1-0 Manchester United

Fergie not happy with Wigan ref

April 11, 2012
By ESPN staff

Sir Alex Ferguson criticised referee Phil Dowd after Manchester United were denied a penalty in Wednesday's 1-0 defeat to Wigan.

Wayne Rooney, Michael Carrick, and Javier Hernandez stand dejected after Wigan's goal
GettyImagesWayne Rooney, Michael Carrick, and Javier Hernandez stand dejected after Wigan's goal

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United were the beneficiaries of a generous decision in the first half when Wigan had a goal chalked off, correctly in the eyes of Ferguson.

The champions then fell behind to Shaun Maloney's 50th-minute winner, which came from a corner that should not have been awarded according to Ferguson. United then saw strong penalty shouts for handball against Maynor Figueroa waved away, and the Red Devils' boss was not happy.

"We had one a couple of weeks ago against Fulham when they claimed for a penalty when the ball was drilled from close range at Patrice Evra. You're never going to get those," Ferguson told Sky Sports.

"But when the offender is 15 yards away it's a different matter altogether. The linesman's clearly in view of it so that was disappointing. It was a penalty kick."

Turning focus to Wigan's goal, Ferguson commented: "It was a bad kick. Clearly a bad kick. Phil Dowd had a disappointing game tonight, he never got to grips with it, but that doesn't take away from the performance of Wigan tonight - they deserved it.

"We were completely dominated by Wigan; by playing three centre-backs they had a lot of time to build from the back. We went against them a bit more in the second half, but in the first half we were dominated.

"It was an off-night that you sometimes get in football."

Just a week after finding themselves on the end of two offside goals at Chelsea, Wigan boss Roberto Mancini had to witness another big decision go against his team when Victor Moses' first-half strike was softly disallowed for a foul on David De Gea. Martinez preferred to focus on his team's achievement though, pleading that Wigan get the credit they deserve for their first Premier League win over United.

"It was a blow at that time (the disallowed goal), but I said I didn't want to speak about refereeing decisions. Today is a historic day for us," Martinez said.

"We had to work very hard but it's fair to say we stopped United from a defensive point of view. When you look at the stats and see they had one shot on target and three corners, it shows how hard we worked.

"But also pleasing was how we kept the ball and created chances. From a mental point of view, that's the first time we've taken anything from United so there was plenty to overcome, and the players deserve a huge amount of credit."