Mancini accuses Young of diving in penalty row ahead of heated Manchester derby
22:30 GMT, 7 December 2012
Sir Alex Ferguson and Roberto Mancini traded barbs over dodgy penalty decisions as they ramped up the pressure ahead of Sunday's Manchester derby.
Mancini accused United winger Ashley Young of 'swimming' – he meant diving – while Ferguson questioned the number of spot-kicks City have been awarded at the Etihad Stadium.
Barclays Premier League leaders United visit champions City with a three-point lead over their neighbours and both managers were testing the FA's rules against pressuring referee Martin Atkinson.
Swimming: Roberto Mancini claimed Ashley Young went to ground too easily last season
WHAT ABOUT THE STATS, FERGIE
Sir Alex says City have had too many penalties at home, but do the stats back him up
20 Home penalties given to City since the start of the 2010-11 season. United had 13 at home
9 United were given nine penalties at home last season, one more than City
21 Both clubs have had the same number of penalties since the start of 2010-11
Ferguson suggested City had won far too many penalties at the Etihad, saying: 'If we got that number of penalty kicks, there'd be an inquiry in the House of Commons.'
When this was put to City manager Mancini half an hour later, however, the Italian pointed to Young's dive that won United an important penalty at home to Aston Villa last season.
Mancini said: 'I remember very well last year when Young was swimming in the box.
'Four or five times in the last 10 games and no-one said anything. Fergie is clever for this.'
Since the start of the 2010-11 season City have been awarded 20 Premier League spot-kicks at home to United's 13.
Barbs: Mancini (above) and Alex Ferguson sniped at the opposite team ahead of the Manchester derby
High five: Edin Dzeko (left) earned a penalty for Manchester City last week against Everton
However, last season United were given nine penalties at Old Trafford – one more than their neighbours.
Referee Atkinson has had problems with both clubs. He was in charge at Old Trafford in 2009 when six minutes of added time saw United seal a 4-3 triumph over City, while he upset Ferguson with his handling of a game at Chelsea two seasons ago.
Ferguson may play captain Nemanja Vidic, while City are hoping to have David Silva back after a hamstring injury.
Asked if City were still the 'noisy neighbours' he called them four years ago, Ferguson laughed: 'Aye, they are screaming now.'
Prepared: Ferguson greeted troops in Chester on Thursday