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Hodgson shifts focus on to Nani
Published : 25 Sep 2010 12:51:00
Roy Hodgson reckons Sir Alex Ferguson may have criticised Fernando Torres last weekend to deflect attention from Nani. Ferguson chastised Torres after Manchester United's 3-2 triumph over Liverpool, accusing him of trying to get John O'Shea sent off when the striker won the free-kick that Steven Gerrard dispatched to make the score 2-2. O'Shea only received a yellow for the infringement and the United defender went on to help his team take the spoils as his cross set up Dimitar Berbatov's hat-trick header. Ferguson has since insisted he didn't brand Torres as 'a cheat', and Hodgson has defended his Spanish marksman while criticising Nani. He said: "Alex is a good friend of mine and knows how to use the mass media and he's used it very well there. "And he might have used it to deflect from Nani who, certainly on one or two occasions, was playing for fouls in our opinion so I'm not concerned about that at all. Fernando Torres is not a cheat, he has proved that time and time again. "He is a very respected player, he is strong and takes players on and not easy to stop and he is going to get fouls like he did for the equalising goals. There is no danger of us cheating. "The players here have had years and years of criticism and crisis management every time they have not won a game or things have not gone their way and I think Torres will shrug those suggestions off just as I shrug them off." Hodgson, who did not defend Torres immediately after the game, added: "I didn't think it was necessary to say it because it was insulting people's intelligence. "For me, it was one of Alex's inflammatory little digs to make his victory even sweeter and our defeat even harder and that's part of the game."