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Tuesday, 18 February, 2003, 14:37 GMT
Ferguson plays down Beckham row
David Beckham sustained a cut eye after being hit by a football boot kicked by Sir Alex Ferguson
The cut above Beckham's eye is clearly visible
Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has played down the seriousness of David Beckham's eye injury.

The Old Trafford boss denied that the England captain needed stitches and insisted the cut above his eye was just a nick or graze.

Beckham was hurt after an angry Ferguson kicked a boot in the dressing-room which hit Beckham in the face.

The incident happened after Ferguson's side lost 2-0 to arch rivals Arsenal on Saturday in the fifth round of the FA Cup.

"I have spent 29 years as a coach and what happens in the dressing-room is sacrosanct," said Ferguson.

"Contrary to reports, David Beckham did not have two stitches - it was a graze which was dealt with by the doctor."

"There is no problem and we move on. That is all there is to say."

Ferguson had previously described Beckham's injury as a "freak incident".

Ferguson made the statement ahead of the club's Champions League tie against Juventus.

"Things like that happen in the dressing room," Ferguson insisted on Monday.

"It was one of those freak accidents of nature that happens and then it's over.

"What a freak, it will never happen again."

The England captain had been substituted during the game at Old Trafford after injuring his right leg.

He was sitting in the dressing room when Ferguson vented his frustration by kicking the boot.

There is no suggestion that the United manager intended to injure the England captain.

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"Injured, beaten and then inadvertently bashed"
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