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Gary Neville And Jamie Carragher Branded 'Irresponsible' For Defending Manchester United Fan Protests

Josh Lawless

| Last updated 

Gary Neville And Jamie Carragher Branded 'Irresponsible' For Defending Manchester United Fan Protests

Gary Neville has been branded "irresponsible" and a "hypocrite' by former Crystal Palace chairman Simon Jordan for defending Manchester United fans' protests on Sunday.

In a statement against their owners,United fans stormed the Old Trafford pitch in anti-Glazer protests that led to the game against Liverpool being called off.


Though the protests were largely peaceful, a total of six police officers were injured after bottles, cans and barriers were thrown and a 28-year-old man has been arrested, Greater Manchester Police say.

Neville, along with Jamie Carragher and Roy Keane, witnessed the protests first hand and defended the actions of United supporters voicing their immense displeasure at their American owners.

Image: PA
Image: PA

But Jordan was not happy by the way in which the Sky Sports pundits justified the way in which fans went about taking a stand.

"Fans are an integral and fundamental part of the game, and they've got an absolute right to air their views, but there is a way to do it," he said on talkSPORT's White and Jordan show on Monday morning.

"There is a building narrative, and I think some of this was brought on by certain people egging on this outlook, whether it's the media or certain pundits who have a lot to say for themselves in a very irresponsible fashion...

"We know the blue touch paper was lit by owners trying to take football in a certain way, but that's the symptom, the disease is something else and it's money in football, and the need for money to be generated and the greed that pervades football.

"Owners operate in a certain way and fans operate in another, but what you've got now are fans stepping across the line. They're going into training grounds, they're breaking into stadiums. I don't care if they were let in by people who work for Manchester United, or they broke in - their actions on that pitch are a discredit to English football.

If you broke into the stadium and the pitch, I don't think you are fans. If you are a genuine Manchester United fans you must be appalled, embarrassed and feel an element of disgrace for what happened yesterday.

"And I don't care what people like Gary Neville come out with, calling on a lynch mob and start talking about how there is an entitlement for fans to do this - no way is there an entitlement to attack police officers, no way is there an entitlement to break into a football pitch, climb onto goals, break into hospitality and smash up environments purely and simply because you think you've got a cause.

"The cause you've got is because you don't like the people who run your football club, you don't like the way they purchase the football and you don't like the fact they tried something that they didn't get away with... but NOTHING justifies that kind of behaviour.

"There's an element of justifying what happened. We've had pundits saying this has been brought about by 16 years of frustration, that this is an opportunity to mobilise - these are the parts that are very damaging."

Neville in particular has been very vocal about the situation at United, as well as passionately opposing the attempt to create a European Super League.

Image: PA
Image: PA

He described clubs such as United and Liverpool as demonstrating "self greed" as they looked to disrupt the football pyramid in England.

The former United skipper has regularly demanded the introduction of an independent regulator within English football.

But Jordan believes Neville, who is Salford City owner, is hypocritical and only interested in self-gain.

Jordan added: "Gary Neville is a barrack-room lawyer who sits on PFA panels, who says salary caps are something football needs to have, while behind the scenes he's talking about the fact the PFA should never allow salary caps to try and control football finances.

"The centre of all of this is money, and the irony of this is Manchester United fans will say it's not about money, but they're making it about money because the Glazers are taking money out of the club.

"The hypocrisy of the argument that 'football isn't all about money' while you make it all about money, because it's all about how the Glazers are taking money.

"There is a selfish nature in football and it pervades football full-stop. The Premier League, despite the promotion and relegation system, has decimated english football - 90 per cent of TV revenues go into the Premier League and the other ten per cent is left for the rest.

"Neville sits there advocating independent regulation - why? Because he's one of the intellectual capitals behind independent regulation with David Bernstein and he wants a seat at the top table.

"The hypocrisy of his ownership of Salford when he got a billionaire owner in there who is funding Salford who are, to my mind, losing money left right and centre, who probably breached financial fair play, and all of this is being utilised by Gary Neville to advise a soap box wrapped in hypocrisy.

"Yes, these owners and the ownership models in football right now are flawed, but why are they flawed? Why has it got to his point? Because of the greed across the board in football and the hypocrisy embodied by people."

Liverpool legend Graeme Souness was particularly critical of United fans' actions and claimed that United fans were choosing to protest now due to a lack of success in recent times.

While on Sky Sports' Monday Night Football last, night Carragher said that suggestion was 'lazy.'

Topics: Football, Manchester United, Simon Jordan, Gary Neville, Old Trafford, Glazer family, Jamie Carragher

Josh Lawless
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