Apology: Manchester United fan who dialled 999 after cup defeat to Sunderland was a former Durham University student

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A FORMER Durham University who drunkenly rang police after seeing his beloved Manchester United knocked out of the Capital One Cup by Sunderland has apologised for his actions.

Red Devils fan Martin Davies, 56, dialled the number and asked to speak to United’s former manager Sir Alex Ferguson after the Black Cats triumphed on penalties at Old Trafford last week.

Mr Davies was recorded asking an operator if he could be put through to the Scot and persuade him to come back to the club with the team enduring a bad period of form in new boss David Moyes’ first season in charge.

Research student Mr Davies has now explained his actions, saying: “I was watching the game with a couple of friends. One of them was a Manchester City fan so I was getting a bit boisterous. I guess I was goaded into ringing.

“It was a spur of the moment thing.

“I was upset as I’ve been a fan since I was six.

“They’ve become so erratic it’s almost criminal. So I rang 999.

“I wanted to speak to Sir Alex to get him to come back and sort them out.

“But I knew there was no point in calling Old Trafford so I thought I’d ring the police.”

The drunken incident came to light after officers from Greater Manchester Police told Facebook users to remember that “999 was for emergencies only”.

Mr Davies added: “I guess I made an error. I mean they could’ve arrested me for wasting police time.”

Sunderland face United’s rivals Manchester City in the final of the competition at Wembley on Sunday, March 2.