We're mates again… Fergie and Ferdinand put Kick It Out T-shirt storm behind them as United head into European showdown
15:17 GMT, 22 October 2012
Sir Alex Ferguson and Rio Ferdinand were back working together in training 48 hours after the Manchester United defender refused to wear a T-shirt supporting the anti-racism Kick It Out campaign.
The defender defied Fergie on Saturday
ahead of United's 4-2 win over Stoke, leading his manager to state
publicly that the 33-year-old would be 'dealt with'.
But Ferdinand was at the club's
Carrington HQ as normal ahead of the Champions League encounter with
Braga at Old Trafford on Tuesday.
Ferguson told a press conference on Monday: 'I spoke to Rio. The issue is pretty simple. There was a communication problem.
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All smiles: Fergie and Ferdinand have put the disagreement over the Kick It Out T-shirts behind them
Something to smile about Fergie shares a joke with the press at the pre-Champions League press conference
'He felt I should have spoken to him on Friday and I didn't anticipate there would be any problem in the dressing room as far as the T-shirt was concerned.
;I have listened to the conviction of Rio and I think it is quite compelling. I can understand his stance.
'But I think you are always stronger as a union. There's more solidarity than as a single unit.
'The advice I would give is that he should take it up with the proper authorities. It is only through that he will make his voice heard.
'Obviously as the manager of the club when you lay down policy you don't want to see it being ignored. That's where my anger came on Saturday.
'But we have resolved the situation, there are no lingering problems and we move on. That is the end of the matter.'
The United manager also revealed he has decided to rest Ferdinand and Patrice Evra for the Braga game ahead of the Barclays Premier League clash with leaders Chelsea on Sunday.
Ferguson added: 'He and Patrice Evra will not play. There is a big game at Chelsea on Sunday. They will be the two main changes tomorrow.'
With Chris Smalling is still sidelined by a broken metatarsal, Ferguson has only Ferdinand, Jonny Evans and rookie Scott Wootton as fit central defenders.
Ferdinand and Ferguson had a training ground summit on Sunday to thrash out their differences over the controversy.
Ferguson told Ferdinand he was disappointed — not that the defender did not wear the T-shirt, but that he didn’t warn him.
Back to business: Fergie and Ferdinand share a laugh and a joke in training on Monday morning
Ferguson thinks this made him look foolish after he told the media on Friday that all his players would wear the T-shirts.
Ferdinand accepted this point and the two agreed to move on.
United source said on Sunday night: 'Rio wanted to make it clear that
he wasn’t deliberately trying to ignore his manager’s instructions while
the manager just said he ought to have been told in advance.'
With so many other players choosing not to wear the shirt, Ferguson would risk a lengthy dispute if he tries to fine Ferdinand.
On Sunday afternoon Ferdinand’s brother
Anton, along with five Queens Park Rangers team-mates, also refused to
wear a T-shirt before the 1-1 draw with Everton.
Rangers boss Hughes will not be taking any action against his players as he voiced concerns of his own.
He said: 'It's a personal thing but my
personal view is that any campaign that focuses on trying to take racism
out of sport and football is a good thing and we should try to support
Let's put it behind us: Fergie holds court in training and there were no signs that Rio held a grudge
'Everyone will have a view about whether
or not enough is being done. Sometimes someone will take a personal
view that what's being done is not enough but you'll never get rid of it
'I don't think so. It's very, very difficult. There'll always be some idiot who feels that it's something they want to do.'
Euro action: United are preparing for their Champions League clash with Braga
The man who started the debate over the value of the Kick it Out campaign is set to meet the group for talks.
Reading striker Jason Roberts suggested players should not back the campaign because it was ineffectual.
Red alert: Sir Alex and Ferdinand have ironed out their differences
Now it is understood Roberts intends to
meet Kick it Out chairman Lord Ouseley this week to talk about ways to
make the organisation stronger.
Rio Ferdinand was criticised by former United defender Viv Anderson, the first black footballer to represent England.
Kicked into touch: Rio refused to wear the T-short ahead of the clash with with Stoke
Anderson said: 'It's not just the football club, it's the FA, the players' union, the managers' union, they all back Kick It Out.
'I know Rio's not happy but you can’t have things all over the place because it doesn't achieve anything.'
Badge of honour: Fergie sported the anti-racism message on his jacket
Opting out: Roberts also declined to wear the shirt before his game for Reading
Video: Fergie and Ferdinand all smiles at Manchester United training session