Sir Alex Ferguson has branded Luis Suárez a "disgrace" who should never play for Liverpool again, as the racism row between the striker and the Manchester United captain, Patrice Evra, continued.
Speaking moments after his side's 2-1 victory over Liverpool at the United stadium, Old Trafford, United's manager said he was stunned by the Uruguayan's refusal to shake hands with Evra before kick-off. Suárez pointedly ignored Evra's hand. It was their first meeting since Suárez served an eight-match ban after being found guilty of racially abusing the 30-year-old Frenchman. Rio Ferdinand, the former United captain, then refused to shake Suárez's hand.
Ferguson said, given the context, Suárez's snub might have led to crowd trouble. "I couldn't believe, I just could not believe it. Patrice told me this morning, 'I'm going to shake his hand, I've nothing to be ashamed of.' But then Suárez refuses. He's a disgrace to Liverpool Football Club," he said.
"Some players should not be allowed to play for Liverpool again, the history that club's got and he does that. In a situation like today he could have caused a riot."
The Liverpool manager, Kenny Dalglish, retaliated by arguing it was completely wrong to blame Suárez and that media scrutiny had inflamed the handshake incident. Liverpool fans also accused Evra of dropping his hand before Suárez approached. After the game, Evra attempted to provoke Suárez by running in front of him towards the home fans, waving his arms in celebration of the victory. Ferguson said afterwards: "He shouldn't have done that."
David Cameron is expected to step into the row over racism in football by holding a "round table discussion" with the sport's authorities and players' representatives at Downing Street, according to the Sunday Telegraph.