Ferguson - Players wanted to leave

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Sir Alex Ferguson has defended the decision to bring three of his young players back from loan spells at Preston in the wake of Darren Ferguson's dismissal.

In what was viewed as a clear act of revenge given his son's treatment, Ferguson opted to recall Ritchie de Laet, Matty James and Joshua King early from their spells at Deepdale.

However, he has moved to deny such claims, saying: "I spoke with the owner, Trevor Hemmings, with whom I have a good relationship, and explained that the players did not want to go back."

He added: "Our reserve-team coach, Warren Joyce, spoke to me about it. We decided that the players should go to training that day and we would discuss it later.

"We decided that if the players did not want to go back there was no point in them being there.

"Matty James was already injured and both Ritchie de Laet and Josh King were coming back in two days' time anyway, so under the regulations, we decided to keep them."

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Darren Ferguson
Preston North End

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