Papers: Boss to respond to FA
Fergie FA hope
Sir Alex Ferguson is to send a letter of apology to FA chiefs in a late bid to escape a rap for his blast at ref Alan Wiley. The United boss has until Friday morning to submit his response to Soho Square supremos after they asked him to explain his outburst when he labelled Wiley 'unfit' following the 2-2 draw with Sunderland this month. Ferguson will return from holiday in the next 24 hours and set about trying to resolve the issue once and for all. It is understood United officials have drafted an apology on his behalf to be sent to the FA. Ferguson has already said sorry to Wiley 'for any personal embarrassment' in a statement on the club's website. Now he is hoping a more formal apology will help him avoid an improper conduct charge. But he fears it will make no difference because of the pressure being heaped on the FA to punish him.Tony Little, The Sun
In other news, the Daily Express
claims Portsmouth goalkeeper David James
could emerge as a shock target for United in January. Sir Alex will assess Ben Foster’s form and Edwin van der Sar’s return from injury over the next couple of months before deciding on James, who would be eligible to play in the Champions League.
In other news, Steve Bruce
and Jamie Redknapp
have backed Rio Ferdinand
to bounce back from his mistake for England against the Ukraine, while Michael Owen
will prove his determination to be part of England's World Cup campaign by joining Fabio Capello at Wembley on Wednesday. Capello has invited 32 players to the game against Belarus who are not in his 23-man squad but who have been called up at some point since he took charge of his first game in February 2008. Owen has won just one of his 89 caps under the Italian from a friendly against France 19 months ago.