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SIr Alex Ferguson Takes His Case To Court

The Rock Of Gibraltar dispute is heading for an ugly court battle between Coolmore head John Magnier and Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson.

The UK Racing Post has reported that Magnier intends to "vigorously contest" legal action by Ferguson over money he claims he is owed from Rock of Gibraltar’s stud career.

Ferguson issued a writ against Magnier claiming he is still a part-owner of the stallion and demanding payment of millions of pounds.

Ferguson claims he was given a 50 per cent share of the racehorse by Magnier as a present and wants half the stud fees.

Rock Of Gibraltar, who is currently serving his first southern hemisphere season in Australia, won seven G1 races carrying Ferguson’s colours.

Magnier issued a statement through a public relations firm refuting Ferguson’s legal claims.

The statement said: "We wish to point out in response to the lodging of legal proceedings against our clients by Sir Alex Ferguson in Dublin, that our clients consider them to be without merit, and that they will be vigorously contested.”

The dispute has an underlying current as Magnier and his business partner JP McManus increased their shareholding in Manchester United last month and now hold a 23 percent stake in the world famous football team.

A Manchester United spokesman said he was aware of the legal action but that it was a private matter between the individuals concerned.

Ferguson issued the writ against Coolmore Stud after reports of a failed attempt to settle the dispute out of court.

It is understood Ferguson rejected the Coolmore settlement offer.

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