65 Facts About Alex Ferguson

1. Alex Ferguson is widely regarded as one of the greatest football managers of all time and has won more trophies than any other manager in the history of football.

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2. Alex Ferguson is often credited for valuing youth during his time with Manchester United, particularly in the 1990s with the "Class of '92", who contributed to making the club one of the richest and most successful in the world.

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3. Alex Ferguson was appointed manager of Manchester United in November 1986.

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4. Alex Ferguson was knighted in the 1999 Queen's Birthday Honours list for his services to the game.

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5. Alex Ferguson is the longest-serving manager of Manchester United, having overtaken Sir Matt Busby's record on 19 December 2010.

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6. Alex Ferguson began his football career with Harmony Row Boys Club in Govan, before progressing to Drumchapel Amateurs, a youth club with a strong reputation for producing senior footballers.

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7. Alex Ferguson took an apprenticeship as a toolmaker at a factory in Hillington, being appointed a union shop steward.

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8. Alex Ferguson's playing career began as an amateur with Queen's Park, where he made his debut as a striker, aged 16.

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9. Alex Ferguson was on a part-time contract with St Johnstone, and he combined working in a Govan shipyard with training at night in Perth.

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10. Alex Ferguson was blamed for a goal conceded in the 1969 Scottish Cup Final, in a match in which he was designated to mark Celtic captain, Billy McNeill, and was forced to play for the club's junior side instead of for the first team.

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11. The SFA announced in October 2021 that some of the tour matches would be reclassified as full internationals, which meant that Alex Ferguson was belatedly awarded an international cap.

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12. In June 1974, Alex Ferguson was appointed manager of East Stirlingshire, at the comparatively young age of 32.

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13. In October 1974, Alex Ferguson was invited to manage St Mirren.

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14. Alex Ferguson was manager of St Mirren from 1974 until 1978, producing a remarkable transformation of a team in the lower half of the old Second Division watched by crowds of just over 1,000, to First Division champions in 1977, discovering talent like Billy Stark, Tony Fitzpatrick, Lex Richardson, Frank McGarvey, Bobby Reid and Peter Weir while playing superb attacking football.

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15. Alex Ferguson claimed wrongful dismissal against the club at an industrial tribunal but lost and was given no leave to appeal.

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16. The tribunal concluded that Alex Ferguson was "particularly petty" and "immature".

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17. Todd said that the fundamental reason for the dismissal was a breach of contract relating to Alex Ferguson having agreed to join Aberdeen.

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18. In 1977, Alex Ferguson turned down the manager's job at Aberdeen.

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19. Alex Ferguson joined Aberdeen as manager in June 1978, replacing Billy McNeill who had only managed the club for one season before he was offered the chance to manage Celtic.

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20. Alex Ferguson took the blame for the defeat, saying he should have made changes to the team for the replay.

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21. Alex Ferguson was still a strict disciplinarian, though, and his players nicknamed him "Furious Fergie".

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22. Alex Ferguson was dissatisfied with the atmosphere at Aberdeen matches, and deliberately created a "siege mentality" by accusing the Scottish media of being biased towards the Glasgow clubs, to motivate the team.

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23. Alex Ferguson was offered the manager's job at Wolverhampton Wanderers but turned it down as he felt that Wolves were in trouble and his "ambitions at Aberdeen were not even half fulfilled".

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24. Alex Ferguson hired Archie Knox, his assistant at Aberdeen, in the same role at Manchester United in 1986.

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25. Alex Ferguson dropped Leighton for the replay, bringing in Les Sealey.

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26. Alex Ferguson made two major signings – goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel and defender Paul Parker – to bolster his side.

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27. Alex Ferguson made at least one approach for the Sheffield Wednesday striker David Hirst, but manager Trevor Francis rejected all offers and the player stayed put.

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28. Alex Ferguson received a 14-day prison sentence for the offence but the sentence was quashed on appeal and replaced by a 120-hour community service order.

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29. Alex Ferguson was heavily criticised in the summer of 1995 when three of United's star players were allowed to leave and replacements were not bought.

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30. Alex Ferguson felt that United had a number of young players who were ready to play in the first team.

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31. Alex Ferguson described him as "the best all-round player in the game" after the team's 1997 FA Charity Shield win and believed Keane had "all the right ingredients" to succeed from Cantona.

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32. Alex Ferguson wanted to strengthen the squad's attacking options and identified Aston Villa's Dwight Yorke as his main target.

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33. Alex Ferguson instructed Eric Harrison and Les Kershaw to find suitable replacements, "in terms of coaching ability and work ethic.

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34. Alex Ferguson felt United's bid to regain the Premier League began indifferently because of their commitments to other competitions.

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35. On reflection, Alex Ferguson said it was "a demonstration of the morale that was to be every bit as vital as rich skill in the five months that lay ahead of United".

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36. Alex Ferguson hoped his team "could at least take it to a penalty shoot-out", but instead the match was settled in extra time: Giggs ran the length of the pitch and evaded several Arsenal players to score the winning goal.

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37. Alex Ferguson contemplated his team selection against Bayern Munich; suspensions to Scholes and Keane ruled both players out of the match.

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38. Alex Ferguson monitored the progress of Ruud van Nistelrooy, "a striker of the highest calibre".

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39. Alex Ferguson met the player and his agent in Manchester to discuss formalities and was informed of Van Nistelrooy's troubled right knee.

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40. Alex Ferguson said he sold the player because the club needed to cut back on its "massive wage bill".

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41. Alex Ferguson replaced the defender with Laurent Blanc, a long sought-after target.

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42. In June 2002, Alex Ferguson appointed Carlos Queiroz as his new assistant.

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43. Alex Ferguson was so impressed with Queiroz after their first meeting, he offered him the job "right away".

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44. Several players were sent away for surgery in this period, a "minor gamble" Alex Ferguson took in the hope they would return energised.

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45. Alex Ferguson felt it was possible "not because of the performance of the players but because of the referee", who disallowed a legitimate Scholes goal that would have been enough to progress.

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46. Alex Ferguson celebrated the 20th anniversary of his appointment as manager of Manchester United on 6 November 2006.

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47. Alex Ferguson was charged by The FA with improper conduct, which he decided to contest.

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48. On 11 May 2008, Alex Ferguson led Manchester United to a tenth Premier League title, exactly 25 years to the day after he led Aberdeen to European glory against Real Madrid in the Cup Winners' Cup.

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49. Alex Ferguson released his second autobiography in October 2013 called My Autobiography.

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50. In January 2014, Alex Ferguson was appointed as the UEFA Coaching Ambassador, and said it was "an honour and a privilege" to be given the role.

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51. Strachan was still with the club when Alex Ferguson was appointed manager in November 1986.

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52. Alex Ferguson thought that Strachan did not play for United with the same confidence he had in Scotland and subsequently sold him to Leeds United in 1989.

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53. In 2003, Alex Ferguson launched legal action against the then major Manchester United shareholder John Magnier over stud rights for race horse Rock of Gibraltar.

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54. Alex Ferguson refused to give interviews to the BBC after a documentary called Fergie and Son was shown on BBC Three on 27 May 2004.

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55. On 25 August 2011, Alex Ferguson met with BBC director general Mark Thompson and BBC North director Peter Salmon, after which Alex Ferguson agreed to end his seven-year boycott.

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56. Bronze statue of Alex Ferguson, designed by Scottish sculptor Philip Jackson, was unveiled outside Old Trafford on 23 November 2012.

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57. In 1998, Alex Ferguson was named in a list of the biggest private financial donors to the Labour Party.

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58. Stringer and fellow Manchester Labour MP Paul Goggins repeated this call after Alex Ferguson announced his retirement in May 2013.

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59. In 2009, Alex Ferguson received an honorary doctorate in business administration from the Manchester Metropolitan University.

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60. Alex Ferguson criticised the Scottish Government and First Minister Alex Salmond for denying the vote to Scots living in the UK but outside Scotland.

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61. Alex Ferguson objected to the self-imposed rule by the Yes Scotland campaign against accepting donations from people living outside Scotland of more than £500, which they urged the No campaign to adopt.

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62. In 1991, Alex Ferguson became a wine collector after being shown a display of bottles from Chateau d'Yquem and Chateau Petrus while in Montpellier, France.

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63. Alex Ferguson won the top division title in England a record 13 times.

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64. Alex Ferguson won 10 Manager of the Year awards, 27 Manager of the Month awards, and managed the most games in the UEFA Champions League.

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65. In 2017, Alex Ferguson was named among the 10 most influential coaches since the foundation of UEFA in 1954.

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