Former Manchester United goalkeeper Ben Foster has urged the club’s supporters to stop protesting against the Glazer family’s ownership and instead show their backing for the club. Foster secured a £6 million move from United to Birmingham this week and the 27 year old’s remarks are likely to stir up anger in the supporters he is leaving behind at Old Trafford.
The Red Knights group of wealthy United supporters have recently promised to attempt to oust the Glazers from the club, which is carrying debts in excess of £700million. Led by leading investment banker and former United director Jim O’Neill, the Red Knights have been inching towards lodging a formal bid for the Old Trafford outfit, which had been anticipated prior to the World Cup’s opening game on June 11.
However Foster believes the club is functioning well and suggests fans could make a greater contribution by diverting their energies. “There’s maybe too much made of it by the supporters” Foster said. “They are obviously passionate about Manchester United, but sometimes they need to focus on supporting the club a bit more than getting carried away with the technicalities of who’s in charge.
“Personally, I think the Glazers have always put money in to Manchester United to buy players when needed. Having said that, I don’t think the manager needs to buy too many players there anyway, they have a lot of good youngsters coming through the ranks.”
Talking about his own future, Foster was not afraid to admit that “The lack of football has cost me at the end of the day in terms of England. I am not on the plane to South Africa and I can’t argue with the manager’s decision. I’ve played one first team game in seven months. I’ve seen Mr Capello at a few matches with United this season and he has asked me what is going on and things like that. I’ll get behind the country like the rest of the fans now and hope we do really well in the tournament.”
St Andrews is his new home and that’s what Foster will be focusing on “I think that Birmingham boss Alex McLeish is pleased that I am looking to play some first team football now. For me the aim is to do well with Birmingham and get back with England for the next European Championships.”
Foster is adamant his relationship with Sir Alex Ferguson remains undamaged after bringing to an end his five year spell at United and asks “Had my relationship with Sir Alex become strained by the end? No definitely not. I’ve read quite a few things saying that we had a massive barney after the Sunderland game. A barney involves two people talking. It was mainly just one person, but the relationship was definitely not strained.
Sir Alex has been wonderful with me and I’ve read some nice things he said the other day which is fantastic to hear, it gives you a boost. You never have to say anything when a player leaves his club. I got on with the manager really well up until the end which unfortunately had to come.’
Can Foster get back his spot in the England squad after the World Cup?