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Ferdinand bloodied and ‘racially abused’ in Manchester derby

BLOODIED: Ferdinand (right) is consoled by team-mate Danny Welbeck after being struck with a coin

MANCHESTER UNITED defender Rio Ferdinand was struck by a coin and allegedly received racist abuse online following his side’s 2-3 victory over local rivals Manchester City on December 9 at the Eithad Stadium.

Police also confirmed that a man was "arrested inside stadium on suspicion of committing a racially aggravated public order offense after officers hear racist chanting.''

A City fan, who attempted to confront Ferdinand after the final whistle but was prevented to do so by Blues goalkeeper Joe Hart, was also apprehended by police.

The 34-year-old Ferdinand laughed off the coin throwing incident, saying on his Twitter account: “What a result, 3 points! Sweet! Whoever threw that coin, what a shot! Can’t believe it was a copper 2p...could have at least been a £1 coin!"

Former England captain Ferdinand also praised Hart for apprehending the pitch invader.

“Respect to Joe Hart for protecting that idiot who ran on!! Love the banter between fans but there is a point when it goes too far...calm it!”

PITCH INVADER: Goalkeeper Joe Hart (centre) prevents a Manchester City fan from confronting Rio Ferdinand

Manchester City released a statement, saying: “We apologise to Rio. We condemn the actions of the individual concerned.

“We are reviewing the CCTV with the police and our normal security.

“We will support the police with any investigation and hopefully identify the person as soon as possible.”

The Great Manchester Police confirmed that are investigating claims that Ferdinand was racially abused online.

They said via their Twitter feed: “Thank you to everyone reporting racist tweets.

“We are aware and are investigating.”

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