United rule out Oz trip

18 July 2009 10:20
Manchester United will not be replacing their cancelled tour game in Indonesia with a fixture offered to be hosted by Australia. The Red Devils' plans to travel to Jakarta were scrapped in the wake of two terrorist bomb blasts, one of which was in the Ritz-Carlton Hotel where they were due to be staying. United officials are currently considering options for a revised schedule, which could see the Indonesian Select side they were due to face on Monday flying out to Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia. However, the Football Federation of Australia made enquiries to see whether Sir Alex Ferguson's side would have been interested in tackling either Sydney FC or Melbourne Victory instead. However, the extra travel - it would have meant a nine-hour flight to Sydney and then 11 hours up to Seoul, where United are set to play on Friday - made it a non-starter given they are heading back to Europe straight after a game on the Sunday in China. "We were planning to pull out all the stops to make it happen," admitted FFA director of communications Bonita Mersiades. "However, their commitments meant the game could only be played on Monday, which we were willing to organise, but there was a lot of to-ing and fro-ing on their side, so unfortunately it wasn't possible." No going back Ferguson has been quick to rule out any possibility the Old Trafford outfit might change their minds over the cancelled game even if fresh assurances were received from the Indonesian authorities. "We have made our decision," he said. "We are terribly disappointed because we know how much work has gone into Manchester United going to Indonesia. "We are well aware of the fan base we have there. "I have been to Asia with Manchester United for 21 years and I have always admired the support and fan base that we have. Going to Indonesia for the first time was a prospect we were looking forward to. "Unfortunately we can't. Maybe it will happen another time but there is no going back on this occasion."

Source: SKY_Sports

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