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Page last updated at 10:19 GMT, Wednesday, 6 May 2009 11:19 UK

Uefa stands by Fletcher red card

Fletcher (right) sees red
Fletcher was shown a straight red card with 15 minutes left and United 3-0 up

Manchester United's Darren Fletcher will miss the Champions League final after Uefa confirmed that his red card against Arsenal will stand.

Fletcher was given a straight red card for an adjudged foul on Cesc Fabregas in the box as United won the second leg of the Champions League semi-final 3-1.

Uefa has confirmed that no appeal can be made against the decision, no matter what the referee says in his report.

United will face Chelsea or Barcelona in the final in Rome on 27 May.

"Manchester United have the right to protest the decision within 24 hours of the match," said a Uefa spokesman.

"However, the protest is only admissible if the referee made an error and mistakenly identified and cautioned or sent off the wrong player.

"There cannot be an appeal against a factual decision taken by the referee and there is nothing to indicate that the referee made a mistake in identifying Fletcher as the player he penalised last night."

Early goals killed off game - Ferguson

After Tuesday's game, United manager Sir Alex Ferguson described the prospect of Fletcher missing out on the final as "a tragedy" but did not criticise Italian referee Roberto Rosetti.

"You can see the ball has moved in a different direction but we shouldn't ask the referee," stated Ferguson.

"He's competent and fair enough to look at it himself possibly. Apparently, you can't appeal and if that's the case it's disappointing for the boy.

"Darren's one of the most honest players in the game and to miss the final is a tragedy."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger also insisted the red card was "very harsh" after television pictures showed Fletcher played the ball cleanly.

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see also
Ronaldo was key to win - Ferguson
06 May 09 |  Europe
Wenger disappointed by manner of defeat
05 May 09 |  Football
Arsenal 1-3 Man Utd (agg 1-4)
05 May 09 |  Europe
Man Utd 1-0 Arsenal
29 Apr 09 |  Europe

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