This post, written by Richard Gilzene, is republished with permission from The Spoiler. Go there often if you like soccer stuff.
In a move that would've seemed extremely unlikely a decade ago, Alex Ferguson has pledged to go on a media onslaught in the run up to Man United's clash against Arsenal on Monday, in an impassioned attempt to convince fans not to rain down scurrilous chants about Arsene Wenger's smile, sweet tooth, or predilection for the company of young people.
Fergie has promised to put out a message in the match programme as well as on future radio and television interviews in order to stop chants the club are calling "objectionable" and "disgusting."
A United spokesman said:
We have gone on the record several times about this disgusting chant. We don't condone it and have appealed to fans several times in the past but to no avail. There are many chants that opposing fans find objectionable and this is certainly one to which all decent supporters should object.
We will take strong action against people who chant in that way. Season tickets will be revoked and we will remove people from the ground for it.
Ferguson himself has gone as far to claim police should get involved if any fans are caught singing naughty songs, saying, last time the issue was brought up:
Manchester United and its supporters should know very well the chants that have been levelled at us over the years — ie songs about Munich [the 1958 air disaster] — and understand the sensitivity that is felt. I don't agree with it at all. There's enough to think about and admire in the game without resorting to denigrating people.
Can't argue with that really. Plus, after well over a decade, the pedophile chants are wearing slightly thin (and becoming slightly irrelevant, if Wenger is going to continue being pictured stepping out with thirtysomething rappers.)
Still, we don't like seeing Elderly Alex getting soft in his old age.
Let's hope someone gives him something to rage about soon enough.