Ferguson 'would consider 2012'

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Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has denied rejecting the opportunity to manage a Great Britain team at the 2012 Olympics.

Quotes have been released from Ferguson taken from an answer he gave in 'Inside United' in which he appeared to distance himself from the job. Yet, Ferguson has revealed it was possible he would manage a Great Britain team, but only if he was no longer in charge at Old Trafford.

"I have not turned it down," he said. "If I was finished with United, it is something I would consider but I have not made a decision about that or given it a thought yet."

Having Ferguson as manager would give huge legitimacy to a British team that is currently the subject of intense debate.

Fearful of losing the vice-presidency of world governing body FIFA that belongs to the four Home Nations as independent countries, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have refused to agree to any deal involving a British team.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown has spoken to FIFA president Sepp Blatter about the situation and received assurances the independent status of the four countries will not be compromised.

However, that has not been enough to satisfy the Celtic countries, who fear the wider football world will demand a single British team in all competitions in future if they agree to join up this time.

The last time a British team competed at the Olympics was in 1960 and, unless Games organising committee head Lord Coe can engineer a change of heart, it looks like an England team will enter the Under-23 competition under the Union Jack.

Copyright (c) PA Sport 2009, All Rights Reserved.

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