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Ferguson tight-lipped over Tevez future

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson refused to discuss the future of Carlos Tevez after the Argentina striker scored to leave his club on the brink of the title.

sports Updated: May 11, 2009 12:00 IST

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson refused to discuss the future of Carlos Tevez after the Argentina striker scored to leave his club on the brink of the title.

Tevez has grown increasingly frustrated at failing to secure a regular starting place in Ferguson's plans and has indicated he could leave Old Trafford when his two-year loan expires in the summer.

The South American celebrated his goal in the 2-0 derby win over Manchester City by running to the main stand, close to where Ferguson was seated, and cupping his ears as the crowd chanted: "Fergie, Fergie sign him up."

Yet the United manager refused to go into detail about the future of the player, who has now scored 14 times this season.

He insisted he had no problem with the way Tevez celebrated but when asked when there would be clarification about Tevez's future, Ferguson snapped: "I'm not going into that at all."

Later he added: "Nothing has changed. He's a Manchester United player. The fans love him because they love triers.

"When players try then fans will always take to that. As long as he keeps scoring, I'll have no problems with that."

Cristiano Ronaldo set United on their way to a sixth successvie league win by opening the scoring with another spectacular free-kick before Tevez's effort on the stroke of half time.

Yet Ronaldo looked unhappy when he was substituted in the second half, the Portugal winger still shaking his head long after leaving the field.

Ferguson refused to criticise the player for his public display of petulance.

"You know what he's like - he wanted to stay on," added Ferguson.

"He's in great form but I'm looking at the bigger picture. It was an incredible performance from him last Tuesday at Arsenal in the Champions League."

United can clinch a record-equalling 18th title at home to Arsenal next Saturday.

They require four points from the remaining three games away to mid-table Wigan, where they won the league last season, on Wednesday, Arsenal and then away to struggling Hull on May 24.

But Ferguson is refusing to take anything for granted after his side restored their three-point advantage over Liverpool at the top of the table.

"Wigan will be a hard game," said Ferguson. "We've only got three days to prepare. We'll freshen the team up again.

The United boss opted against risking Rio Ferdinand after the England defender suffered a calf injury on the eve of the match.

But Ferguson confirmed that the injury was not serious and that the player could be back at Wigan.

"I rested two or three players today and maybe bring Rio Ferdinand back," said Ferguson.

"We'll make two or three changes because we need to do that. I've got a big suqad so i'm going to use it."

Mark Hughes, the City manager, knows his side will have to improve in their final two games against Tottenham and Bolton if his side are to qualify for the Europa League next season.

"We didn't ask enough questions of United," said Hughes, a former United player.

"We found it difficult to break them down. The focus now switches to Tottenham next week. If we can win our last two games then we've got a chance of making Europe."

To cap a miserable day for Hughes, Brazil forward Robinho suffered a groin injury and was substituted in the closing stages.

First Published: May 11, 2009 11:58 IST