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Sir Alex Ferguson blasts referee after Birmingham draw

| 29.12.2010

Sir Alex Ferguson has criticised referee Lee Mason for allowing Birmingham’s late equaliser at St Andrew’s last night

Mason failed to spot Nikola Zigic’s handball in the build up to Bowyer’s late equalizer meaning United missed the chance to go two points clear of bitter rivals Manchester City at the top of the Premier League.

United now face a tough New Year’s day trip to West Bromwich Albion, with Fergie’s men 1/2 to overcome the Baggies. However, Ferguson believes his side should already have some breathing space.

He said: “”It was handball. There was also a foul on the centre-half.

“Zigic went right through the back of Ferdinand. If the ref can’t see that, what chance have you got?

“I think we outplayed them in the second half. We deserved to win the game, we were the better team.

“Maybe we should have finished them off. We just lacked a bit more care in our final pass and finishing.

“At this moment there are five or six teams who are all contesting that area at the top but if you get to new year and you are in that front position then you have a great chance.”

United have now won just one of eight Premier League away games this season, but should add to that total against the Baggies.

Roberto Di Matteo’s side have lost their last three games – including two against struggling Aston Villa and Blackburn Rovers.

It won’t be easy, but United should double their away wins this season with a win at 1/2.

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Richard Anderson