Sir Alex Ferguson feared the worst he said, after hearing that Martin Atkinson would be officiating his teams game against Chelsea in the Premier League.
United were beaten 2-1 in the game, and saw some questionable decisions go against them as Ferguson watched on.
Ferguson, was particularly annoyed with Atkinson’s failure to send off David Luiz, who scored for Chelsea, and was lucky to stay on the pitch, even by his own managers admission.
Luiz was booked for one clumsy challenge on Wayne Rooney, and was lucky not to walk for again tripping the England forward.
Atkinson also riled the United fans and players by awarding Chelsea a soft penalty, after substitute Yuri Khirkov ran into Chris Smalling and went down.
Lampard didn’t need a second invitation and rammed the penalty home to give the Champions a 2-1 lead and send Stamford Bridge into raptures.
More bad blood followed as Vidic was given a second yellow card, although until that point was the best player on the pitch, and in stoppage time Didier Drogba almost single handidly kept the ball in the corner for 5 minutes, drawing a very rash challenge from Ryan Giggs, who was lucky to only see yellow.
Ferguson revealed he was perplexed as to why Atkinson got given such an important game.
“You hope you get a strong referee in games like this,” said Ferguson.
“It was a major game for both clubs. You want a fair referee – or a strong referee, anyway – and we didn’t get that.
“I don’t know why he has got the game. I must say, when I saw who the referee was I did fear it. I feared the worst.”
Jokes swirling around just minutes after the game revealed United had lost because their key men were injured. Owen Hargreaves, Rio Ferdinand and Howard Webb had all failed to make the trip.