Ferguson's Brown views
By Adam Marshall
Last Updated: 01/01/70 1:00am
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson insists he would not have had a problem with Sven Goran Eriksson selecting Wes Brown for the Euro 2004 finals in Portugal.
The United boss had voiced his disapproval to the injury-hit centre back making Eriksson's squad but, in any case, the Swede omitted the 24-year-old and claimed he felt the player was not back to his best.
"It's a difficult one for Sven in that he's obviously got John Terry and Sol Campbell," suggested Ferguson. "He knew if he takes Wes to Portugal, the boy could be sitting doing nothing and training every day when he should be having a rest, which is perfect for Wes but maybe not perfect for a combination of England and Wes.
"I think he wanted to go, it wouldn't have bothered me. If Sven had picked him, it would have been fine with me.
"But you need to talk about what the priorities are, more for Wes to have a rest rather than take part in a tournament."
Ferguson feels midfielder Roy Keane will be fit for the FA Cup final against Millwall on Saturday.
"He's trained the last three days, including today, and, hopefully, there's been no reaction," he added.
"I think he'll be okay. I don't think there will be a reaction.
"He's done everything we've asked of him.
"I think you always want your best players on occasions like this and, without doubt, he's the biggest influence on the team.
"He's captain and he's been there more times than anyone else so it's natural we want him there.
"He's a great player."
The United manager was less forthcoming about any interest in Leeds United striker Alan Smith despite the Yorkshire club claiming to have rejected two bids from Old Trafford.
The arrival of a player who failed to make Eriksson's Euro 2004 squad, and has such strong ties with The Red Devils' rivals from across the Pennines, would provoke a mixed reception from the United faithful.
"I have nothing to say about it," growled Ferguson. "Nothing."