A;EX FERGUSON FEELS that Kenny Dalglish’s handling of the Luis Suarez racism controversy contributed to his sacking as Liverpool manager.
Liverpool striker Suarez was found guilty of racially abusing Manchester United fullback Evra in October last year, and banned for eight matches by the English Football Association.
Dalglish strongly defended Suarez throughout the saga, even when the Uruguay international refused to shake Evra’s hand during a match between United and Liverpool in February.
Scotsman Dalglish was removed from his post in May after taking the team to eighth in the English Premier League, although they did manage to win the League Cup.
And United manager Ferguson has suggested his compatriot’s questionable judgement in dealing with Suarez directly led to the end of Dalglish’s second spell in charge at Anfield.
“I wasn’t surprised at Kenny leaving,” Ferguson said. ”(Liverpool owner) John Henry has obviously looked at that (the Suarez incident) and felt it wasn’t handled in the right way. It certainly wasn’t a nice thing to happen and it must have been part of it.”
Suarez revisited the issue this week by claiming United’s ‘political power’ influenced the FA finding against him in the matter, allegations Ferguson has denied.
“It’s not going to go away if Suarez keeps on making headlines out of it,” he said. ”It was nothing to do with Manchester United. It wasn’t Evra’s contribution, it wasn’t Suarez’s contribution.
“What killed Suarez was the guy who explained the cultural differences,” he added, referring to attempts by Liverpool’s public relations department to explain away Suarez’s use of abusive language.
In the wake of Suarez’s refusal to shake the hand of Evra in February, some conspiracy theorists alleged the France international was to blame for the second flashpoint, claiming he moved his hand away from the Liverpool man.
But Ferguson dismissed the suggestions, and revealed his player suspected the worst prior to the match.
“I think Evra expected him (Suarez) not to shake hands,” the United manager said.
“He actually said that to the lads. He just felt that he wasn’t going to shake his hand. He was embarrassed to put his hand there.
“But there is no doubt Evra put his hand towards him. It’s Suarez who should be making the effort to do something about it.”