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  • Mitre June 17

Anfield clash between Liverpool and United needs to pass off quietly

Football News 24/7
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has warned his players they must keep their cool at Anfield on Sunday when his side take on Liverpool.

Clashes between the two sides are usually heated affairs with six red cards in the last 11 meetings.

"We've had a lot of players sent off at Anfield. But I don't think the games have ever got out of hand," he said.

"It's going to be meaty, competitive, and we expect that. But I just hope our disciplinary record is good."

There are more sub plots to this game than Coronation Street. As if the Hillsborough v Munich issues between the rival fans wasn't enough  Luis Suarez and Patrice Evra are likely to go up against each other again following last season's fall-out between the pair.

The Uruguayan failed to shake the French defender's hand before United's 2-1 win over their rivals.

The incident came following Suarez's eight-game ban for racially abusing the United player.

To try and avoid embarrasment for United as a club, Sir Alex Ferguson has written a letter to Manchester United supporters attending Sunday's Premier League game;

The letter will be presented to fans as they enter the turnstiles and is a final plea aimed at getting them to behave themselves.

Earlier on Friday Ferguson spoke of the sensitivities surrounding the fixture, Liverpool's first at home since the damning judgement on the Hillsborough disaster was released last week.

And he wants an end to the baiting of Liverpool fans over the disaster, in which 96 people died.

As published by the club's official website, Ferguson's letter reads: 'Dear Supporter, 'The great support you gave the team here [at Anfield] last season has seen our allocation back up to near-full levels. I want you to continue that progress today.
 
'But today [Sunday] is about much more than not blocking gangways. Today is about thinking hard about what makes United the best club in the world.

 'Our rivalry with Liverpool is based on a determination to come out on top - a wish to see us crowned the best against a team that held that honour for so long.

'It cannot and should never be based on personal hatred. Just 10 days ago, we heard the terrible, damning truth about the deaths of 96 fans who went to watch their team try and reach the FA Cup final and never came back.

'What happened to them should wake the conscience of everyone connected with the game.

'Our great club stands with our great neighbours Liverpool today to remember that loss and pay tribute to their campaign for justice. I know I can count on you to stand with us in the best traditions of the best fans in the game.

'Yours sincerely, Sir Alex Ferguson.'

For football's sake every neutral is hoping and praying that today's clash is about the match and not what happens off the field.

JB

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