FOOTBALL NEWS

23/10/2011 15:30, Report by Mark Froggatt
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Sir Alex expects response

Sir Alex Ferguson is looking for a reaction from his players after United suffered a 6-1 thumping at the hands of local and title-race rivals Manchester City in the Barclays Premier League.

The boss believes the manner of Sunday’s defeat will have a positive impact on his squad and hopes his men will bounce back to title-winning form against Everton next weekend.

“You have to recover,” declared Sir Alex. “In the history of Manchester United, it is another day and we’ll recover from this, there’s no question about that.

“But that kind of defeat will make an impact on the players. There’s a lot of embarrassment in the dressing room and quite rightly so. Hopefully they’ll show that [reaction] next week.”

The Reds dominated the early possession against Roberto Mancini’s side and were perhaps unlucky to fall behind to Mario Balotelli's goal on 22 minutes. Victory was by no means beyound United as the second half kicked off, but a red card for Jonny Evans undoubtedly made the quest for a positive result more difficult.

“For the first 10 minutes, we absolutely dominated the game and played some brilliant football so it was hard to believe when we went 1-0 down," Sir Alex reflected. "But that was retrievable. The sending-off was a killer blow to us.

“The player (Balotelli) didn’t control the ball, but the fact Jonny tugged his jersey gave the referee plenty of reason to send him off. It was a killer, a really bad blow to us because City are so strong defensively."

The Reds threw men forward in a valiant attempt to repeat the heroics of the past and claim a trademark win from behind, but it was a tactic that was exploited by the visitors.

“We just kept attacking," said Sir Alex. "It’s alright playing with the history books but common sense has to come in at times. With the experience we had at the back, we should have realised that and settled for what we had when it went to 4-1.

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