By Kieran Lovelock

Carlo Ancelotti leapt to the defense of Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson last night in the wake of the Scot’s 5 match touchline ban for his criticisms of referee Martin Atkinson in United’s 2-1 loss to Chelsea on the 1st of March.

Speaking after Chelsea’s 0-0 draw with Copenhagen last night, in turn putting Chelsea through to the quarter finals of the Champions League, Ancelotti said: “I think Ferguson has always had good behavior. To be out for five games is too much in my opinion.”

As well as the 5 match ban Ferguson will also be fined $45,000 for his actions and will now miss United’s crucial FA Cup semi final with local rivals Manchester City at Wembely on the 16th of April.

The ban was specifically in relation to comments made about Martin Atkinson’s alleged lack of integrity as Ferguson said: “You want a fair referee, or a strong referee anyway, and we didn’t get that. I must say when I saw who the referee was I feared it. I feared the worst.”

Ferguson will begin his ban this Saturday at United’s home match to Bolton unless who chooses to appeal which could see him banned for a further game should the it be unsuccessful.