Ferguson backs Parker award

Parker overcame Gareth Bale to be crowned winner of a prize that

has been running since 1948. He is only the second West Ham player

to receive the award, following in the footsteps of legendary

England skipper Bobby Moore, and comes in a season when his club

could well be relegated. Ferguson has been dubious about the merits

of such prizes ever since David Ginola won in Manchester United’s

1999 Treble-winning year, a decision he still feels was “an insult”

to the Old Trafford outfit at the time. Centre-back Nemanja Vidic,

winger Nani and striker Javier Hernandez have all enjoyed

impressive campaigns for United, who remain in contention for a

Premier League and Champions League double, and Ferguson could be

forgiven for expressing similar sentiments now as he did 12 years

ago. However, the 69-year-old claims Parker deserves the honour and

believes it makes a refreshing change, with Parker the first winner

from outside the established ‘big clubs’ since Alan Shearer, then

of Blackburn, won it in 1994. “It is a good step forward to give it

to a really good professional,” said Ferguson. “Scott Parker has

certainly done a good job at West Ham. There is no doubt about

that. “He is probably the player who has driven them on and

motivated them to still have a chance of staying up, even though

they have a mountain to climb now. “I remember when we won the

Treble, David Ginola got it. I have nothing against him at all but

it was an insult to Manchester United that it was felt not one

United player had a better season than he did. “It is nice to

recognise someone outside the clubs who always get publicity like

United, Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea and Tottenham.”