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Ryan Shawcross lifted by messages of support after horror tackle on Aaron Ramsey
Published : 18 Mar 2010 17:29:35Rss feed
The Manchester United manager and Liverpool midfielder both got in touch within hours of the 22 year-old being sent off for a challenge which left Arsenal's Ramsey with an horrific double-fracture of his right leg. Ferguson called Shawcross after United's Carling Cup final victory over Aston Villa - the day after Stoke's game. Gerrard, who was captain of the England squad the defender had just been called up to, sent a text message welcoming him into Fabio Capello's group and asking about his welfare. Shawcross insists he has now moved on from that night at the Britannia Stadium and is ready for a return to action against Tottenham on Saturday after serving his three-match ban. "That's the end of it. We made contact but I'd like to keep that between me and Aaron," said the former Manchester United centre-back, who received more than 300 emails and 100 letters of support from fans after the incident. "I just want to concentrate on football and Aaron has to concentrate on getting back to full fitness. "It was a big downer after that incident and then I got the England call up, which was a fantastic achievement. "Sir Alex rang me after the Carling Cup final, which was good of him, and we had a good chat and that was just something to lift my spirits. "That is the man he is and he is a fantastic manager and even when you leave he keeps in contact and makes sure you are all right. "That is probably why he is one of the best managers there has been. "I got a text from Steven Gerrard to say I was welcome in the squad, so straight away I knew they would be fine with me. "He was checking I was fine. He didn't have to do it but it shows what kind of character he is in helping someone out." Shawcross is confident the tackle will not have any long-lasting effect on him or the way he plays. "I was quite surprised how quickly I was back to normal," he added. "I knew straight after I was going to be the same player and make tackles. "It was an accident and these things happen in football - I'm not going to change the way I play. "If I get chance to play on Saturday I will play my normal game as I always have done." Shawcross' participation at the weekend may be in doubt because of an ankle niggle sustained in training. However, if he overcomes that manager Tony Pulis has no qualms about thrusting him straight back into the action. "I think everyone who has seen the incident, apart from maybe one person (Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger), recognises it was an accident," he said. "He has been going into tackles in training and Ryan's been fine, he's been bombing around and doing extra work. "It won't make any difference to him and I'm delighted to have him back. "We have a very strong dressing room and he has had support from the players - we don't leave people to swim by themselves, he has been very well looked after. "He is a very level-headed kid. He's been captain of this team this season and, at that age, I think that shows he has good character." Former world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson, who is currently on an after-dinner speaking tour, paid a visit to the club's training ground this afternoon and met some of the players. "Mike popped in for a few minutes and it was lovely to see him," said Pulis. "The organisers are big Stoke supporters so they were keen to get him down here, if only for a couple of minutes."
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