Evatt: ‘Fergie will not listen’

Blackpool defender Ian Evatt
Blackpool defender Ian Evatt
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IAN Evatt says Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson will ignore the pleas of other managers and pick whatever team he pleases to face Blackpool on Sunday.

Pool’s rivals in the Premier League relegation battle have stated the importance of the champions fielding their strongest side on what is set to be a frantic and nailbiting final day.

But with the title in the bag and the Champions League final six days later, Ferguson is unlikely to do that.

And that gives Pool a better chance of getting a result at Old Trafford, where United have dropped only two points all season, and of staying in the top flight for a second season.

Evatt is convinced Ferguson won’t care what anyone says and will do what he likes.

The Pool centre-half said: “Sir Alex Ferguson has won the Premier League 19 times. He will do his own thing and what he thinks is best for his own club.

“No matter which manager pipes up and says Sir Alex should be doing this, or even if the Premier League say he shouldn’t do something, he will do what he thinks is best for Manchester United.

“If that means playing the reserves, he’ll play them. If he wants to play the first team, he’ll do that.

“We could worry about that all day long but we won’t because it is important we concentrate on ourselves and play like we have been playing.

“For us it is like a play-off final or a cup final but it’s the same for the other teams down there.

“As long as we get three points we will have a great chance of staying in this division.

“If we get a victory and are unlucky enough to go down with 42 points, then I don’t think we could have done much more.

“We would certainly be able to all hold our heads up high.”

During the crunch clash with United, the 3,000 travelling supporters will no doubt keep abreast of what’s going on elsewhere as Pool battle Birmingham, Blackburn, Wolves and Wigan to avoid the drop, with just a single point separating all five.

But Evatt says the players cannot afford to fret about anything other than beating the Reds.

He added: “You can go on about ifs and buts, but as long as we win I’m sure we’ll be OK and that’s what we have to focus on. We won’t be thinking of what’s going on anywhere else.

“On our day we are capable of matching any team in this division, including Manchester United.

“We are desperate to stay up. I think this town deserves Premier League football, but above all I think this group of players do.

“What they have achieved for Blackpool FC in the last few years is nothing short of fantastic.

“No matter what happens, it has been a fantastic season and I’m sure our supporters are very proud.”