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'A centimeter either side and Rio loses an eye' - Giggs condemns Manchester City coin controversy

'A centimeter either side and Rio loses an eye' - Giggs condemns Manchester City coin controversy

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The veteran Welshman has stressed that the United defender was lucky to escape the incident without serious injury and has called on steps to be taken to prevent it being repeated

Manchester United midfielder Ryan Giggs has condemed the actions of a Manchester City fan who threw a coin at teammate Rio Ferdinand.

The incident occurred at the end of a frantic Manchester Derby, when Ferdinand was struck just above the eye by a coin thrown from a supporter in the City end moments after Robin van Persie's last-gasp winner to hand Sir Alex Ferguson's side a dramatic 3-2 victory.

Despite a total of nine people being charged after the game at the Etihad Stadium, though, the fan responsible for injuring Ferdinand has yet to be identified by the police, and Giggs has also called for action to be taken to prevent anything similar happening in the future.

"It happens; I think it's tough for someone to get hit in the face, for everyone to sort of make a big a thing out of it," Giggs told reporters. "I got hit at Chelsea when Javier Hernandez scored. It's not just one club, it's not just City, it's not just Chelsea.

"Every club, the excitement and the passion we all want but we don't want it to tip over the edge. A centimeter either side and Rio loses an eye, it's so dangerous. We don't want to see it. It is up to the clubs and the police, the FA to do everything in our power to make sure it doesn't happen again."

There have been suggestions that Ferdinand may have been partially responsible for the incident for celebrating in such a near proximity to the home fans. Giggs, though, who was an unused substitute on the day, has defended his teammate’s right to celebrate such an important goal and believes the closeness of the home and away fans in the ground contributed to the incident.

"As a player you want to celebrate. When you score a goal like that you don't have control of yourself," Giggs said. "First of all, it's tough at City, because their hardcore supporters are right next to our supporters. When they are so close together how can you determine whether you are just celebrating in front of United fans?

"If you just scored that goal and walked back to the center circle, United fans would want to know 'What's going on there?' The manager would be like 'What you doing? Celebrate'. We have stamped it out going into the crowd, you get an instant booking. You have still got to enjoy that sort of experience, but obviously the players and fans can't go too far."

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