London, May 17 (ANI): Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has refused to be present at the Football Association hearing after being charged for saying that World Cup final referee Howard Webb was "the best man for the job" before his side's crucial clash against Chelsea on May 8.
Ferguson was given until 4pm Monday to respond to the misconduct charge. He could have pleaded not guilty and demanded a personal hearing.
But he simply ignored it and, instead, United wrote to the FA informing them of the manager's position.
A hearing will now go ahead without Ferguson being present, The Sun reports.
FA bosses charged Ferguson under Rule E3 saying he ignored a written warning to managers in October that they must not discuss officials before a match.
Ferguson said of Webb's appointment: "We are getting the best referee, there is no doubt about that. But (getting a bad decision) is definitely our big fear."
The United boss, 69, believes the FA is hell bent on making an example of him any way they can.
He recently returned from a five-match touchline ban for criticising referee Martin Atkinson after United's 2-1 defeat at Chelsea on March 1. (ANI)