Alex Ferguson: My Autobiography
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The celebratory, revealing, inspiring, and entertaining autobiography of the greatest manager in the history of British soccer Over the past four years, Alex Ferguson has been reflecting on and jotting down the highlights of his extraordinary career, and here he reveals his amazing story as it unfolded, from his very early days in the tough shipyard areas of Govan. Sir Alex announced his retirement as manager of Manchester United after 27 years in the role. He has gone out in a blaze of glory, with United winning the Premier League for the 13th time, and he is widely considered to be the greatest manager in the history of British soccer. Over the last quarter of a century there have been seismic changes at Manchester United, with the only constant element the quality of the manager's league-winning squad and United's run of success, which includes winning the Champions League for a second time in 2008. Sir Alex created a purposeful, but welcoming, and much envied culture at the club, which has lasted the test of time. He discusses managing these enormous changes and the growth of Man U as a global sports power. He shares the farewells to Roy Keane and David Beckham, describes the process of building a new Champions League side around Ronaldo and Rooney, and ruminates upon the great rivalries with Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, and City. He also shares his thoughts on the psychology of management and his passions and interests outside of the game.
hounding role we reduced Pirlo’s strike rate to 25 per cent. There was no better player in our squad to keep on top of Alonso than Danny Welbeck. Yes, we sacrificed Wayne’s possible goal-scoring, but we knew we had to choke Alonso and exploit that gain. Ronaldo was wonderful in those two games. In the Madrid leg he made his way into our dressing room to sit with our players. You could tell he missed them. After the Old Trafford game, as I was watching the video of the sending-off, he came in to
you’ve got a hundred million pounds to risk, go ahead.’ ‘No, no,’ he said, ‘they’re only eleven million in debt.’ ‘But have you seen the stadium?’ I replied. ‘You’ll need a new stadium, for maybe sixty million, and then forty million to get them into the Premier League.’ People try to apply to football the usual principles of business. But it’s not a lathe, it’s not a milling machine, it’s a collection of human beings. That’s the difference. We faced some seismic fixtures before that season’s
his teams throw in the towel, and he deserves credit for that. Why did he not do as well as he might have at Anfield, from my perspective? Benítez had more regard for defending and destroying a game than winning it. You can’t be totally successful these days with that approach. José Mourinho was far more astute in his handling of players. And he has personality. If you saw José and Rafa standing together on the touchline, you knew you could pick the winner. You always had to respect a Liverpool
be easy for Wes Brown or John O’Shea to make the starting XI. They were good servants to me. The horrible part of management is telling people who have given their all for you that there is no longer a place for them in your plans. After the Premier League title parade, in the rain, we returned to the school from where we had started the procession. I spoke to Darron Gibson and asked him how he saw his future. Perhaps it wasn’t the perfect place to begin that discussion, but he got the gist of
best footballer, but they changed manager so many times after Graham Turner was sacked. Graham Taylor, Mark McGhee, Colin Lee. When McGhee came in, his appearances started to dwindle. He then moved to Sparta Rotterdam and once more did well. They changed the coach while he was away on holiday and the new man didn’t want him. He then came back to Wrexham and became settled there. As his playing career wound down, Barry Fry called from Peterborough and asked what Darren was doing. He ended up as