121 Facts About Sir Alex Ferguson


Sir Alexander Chapman Ferguson was born on 31 December 1941 and is a Scottish former football manager and player, best known for managing Manchester United from 1986 to 2013.

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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson played as a forward for several Scottish clubs, including Dunfermline Athletic and Rangers.

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Sir Alex Ferguson then enjoyed a highly successful period as manager of Aberdeen, winning three Scottish league championships, four Scottish Cups and the UEFA Cup Winners' Cup in 1983.

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Sir Alex Ferguson briefly managed Scotland following the death of Jock Stein, taking the team to the 1986 World Cup.

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

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

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Alexander Chapman Ferguson was born at his grandmother's home on Shieldhall Road in the Govan district of Glasgow on 31 December 1941, the son of Elizabeth and Alexander Beaton Ferguson.

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Sir Alex Ferguson's father was a plater's helper in the shipbuilding industry.

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Sir Alex Ferguson grew up in a tenement at 667 Govan Road, which has since been demolished, where he lived with his parents and his younger brother Martin, who became a footballer.

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Sir Alex Ferguson attended Broomloan Road Primary School and later Govan High School.

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

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Sir 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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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson regularly requested transfers, and even considered emigrating to Canada.

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Sir Alex Ferguson then joined Rangers for £65,000, which was a record fee for a transfer between two Scottish clubs.

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Sir Alex Ferguson performed well in Europe during his two seasons with the club, scoring six goals in nine appearances in the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup including two against 1.

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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson's autobiography noted that Rangers had known of his wife's religion when he joined the club.

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Sir Alex Ferguson left Rangers reluctantly, as he had grown up locally and had dreamed of succeeding there.

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Sir Alex Ferguson was upset by how newspapers would refer to him as an "ex-Rangers player" after he had left, and rarely attended gatherings of their former players.

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Sir Alex Ferguson remained at Brockville for four years, gaining more league appearances than he had elsewhere; in recognition of his experience he was promoted to player-coach, but when John Prentice became manager he removed Ferguson's coaching responsibilities.

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

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Sir 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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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson was counter-accused of intimidating behaviour towards his office secretary because he wanted players to get some expenses tax free.

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Sir Alex Ferguson did not speak to her for six weeks, confiscated her keys and communicated only through a 17-year-old assistant.

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Sir Alex Ferguson told journalist Jim Rodger of the Daily Mirror that he had asked at least one member of the squad to go to Aberdeen with him.

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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson had now been a manager for four years, but was still not much older than some of the players and had trouble winning the respect of some of the older ones such as Joe Harper.

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

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson fined one of his players, John Hewitt, for overtaking him on a public road, and kicked a tea urn at the players at half time after a poor first half.

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Sir 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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Sir 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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Aberdeen became only the third Scottish team to win a European trophy and Sir Alex Ferguson now felt that "he'd done something worthwhile with his life".

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Sir Alex Ferguson was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire in the 1985 New Year Honours, and was offered the managers' jobs at Rangers and Arsenal during the season.

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Sir Alex Ferguson had been part of the coaching staff for the Scottish national side during qualifying for the 1986 World Cup, but manager Jock Stein had collapsed and died on 10 September 1985 – at the end of the game in which Scotland qualified from their group for a play-off against Australia.

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Sir Alex Ferguson promptly agreed to take charge of the Scottish national side against the Australians and subsequently at the World Cup.

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However, after Scotland failed to progress past the group stages of the World Cup, Sir Alex Ferguson stepped down as national team manager on 15 June 1986.

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Sir Alex Ferguson was appointed manager at Old Trafford on 6 November 1986.

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Sir Alex Ferguson was initially worried that many of the players, such as Norman Whiteside, Paul McGrath and Bryan Robson were drinking too much and was "depressed" by their level of fitness, but he managed to increase the players' discipline and United climbed up the table to finish the season in 11th place, having been 21st when he took over.

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson later described December 1989 as "the darkest period [he had] ever suffered in the game", as United ended the decade just outside the relegation zone.

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

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson had added Soviet midfielder Andrei Kanchelskis to the right wing, giving him a more attacking alternative to older midfielders Mike Phelan and Bryan Robson.

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Sir Alex Ferguson felt that his failure to secure the signing of Mick Harford from Luton Town had cost United the league, and that he needed "an extra dimension" to the team if they were to win the league the following season.

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Sir Alex Ferguson first attempted to sign Alan Shearer from Southampton, but lost out to Blackburn Rovers.

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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson was later voted Manager of the Year by the League Managers' Association.

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Sir Alex Ferguson added Nottingham Forest's 22-year-old midfielder Roy Keane to the ranks for a British record fee of £3.

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

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson was willing to "pay for the progress" made in the Champions League; the team finished second in their Champions League "group of death", behind Bayern Munich and ahead of Barcelona.

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On reflection, Sir 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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Sir 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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Sir 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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Schmeichel's decision to leave United after eight seasons prompted Sir Alex Ferguson to bring in replacements: Mark Bosnich from Aston Villa and Italian Massimo Taibi.

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Sir Alex Ferguson sought to strengthen his squad and signed Fabien Barthez from Monaco for £7.

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

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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson was not agitated by this; he recalled from experience a similar niggle that did not stop his playing career.

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Van Nistelrooy failed his medical, but Sir Alex Ferguson reassured him that "we might yet find a way out of the nightmare".

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The player reportedly moved because of claims in his autobiography Head to Head; Stam implied that Sir Alex Ferguson illegally contacted him about a move to Manchester United, before informing PSV.

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

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson's family convinced him to remain in charge of United and Ferguson informed Watkins of his u-turn the following day.

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Once Sir Alex Ferguson publicised his decision to remain in February 2002, United's form improved.

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Sir Alex Ferguson himself said that the decision to announce his retirement had resulted in a negative effect on the players and on his ability to impose discipline.

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson anticipated his deputy would return – "Three months later, he was wanting to quit Madrid, " and for that reason did not appoint a replacement.

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

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

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On 11 May 2008, Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson ended the following season by winning his 12th and Manchester United's 19th league title and thus overtaking Liverpool's record of 18.

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Analyst Alan Hansen stated that he believed Sir Alex Ferguson was "the key component" in United's success that season, so key in fact that "[he] would have claimed the crown with any of the other top sides had he been in charge of them".

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On 8 May 2013, Sir Alex Ferguson announced that he had decided to retire as manager at the end of the football season, but would remain at the club as a director and club ambassador.

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

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In January 2014, Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson's book, Leading: Learning from Life and My Years at Manchester United, was published in collaboration with billionaire venture capitalist, author and former journalist Michael Moritz in August 2015.

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Sir Alex Ferguson said that he believed although "there was a cunning streak in Strachan, I had never imagined that he could pull such a stroke on me".

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Sir 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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Strachan's reaction to the attack, in his own autobiography, My Life in Football, was one of being "surprised and disappointed", although he suspected that Sir Alex Ferguson had helped to relegate Strachan's Coventry City in 2001 by fielding a weakened Manchester United team in a match against Derby County.

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In February 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson was involved in a dressing room argument with Manchester United player David Beckham.

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Sir Alex Ferguson allegedly kicked a football boot in frustration, which hit Beckham in the face and caused a minor injury.

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Sir Alex Ferguson apologised to Beckham, who was transferred to Real Madrid later that year.

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On 5 April 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson claimed that the Champions League draw was fixed in favour of Spanish and Italian teams.

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UEFA charged Sir Alex Ferguson for bringing the game into disrepute with his comments.

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Sir Alex Ferguson apologised for his remarks and wrote a letter to UEFA in explanation, but he was fined 10,000 Swiss francs by the governing body.

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In 2003, Sir 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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Magnier counter-sued Sir Alex Ferguson by filing a "Motion to Comply" requiring Sir Alex Ferguson to substantiate his claim for half of Rock of Gibraltar's stud fees.

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson later said that it was the players' own request not to return to Preston after the change of manager.

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Sir Alex Ferguson has received numerous punishments for abusing and publicly criticising match officials when he has perceived them to be at fault:.

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

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Documentary about Ferguson's career titled Sir Alex Ferguson: Never Give In was released in UK cinemas on 27 May 2021 and was made available on Amazon Prime Video in the UK and Ireland on 29 May It includes interviews from Ferguson himself, his family, doctors and former players who he managed throughout his career.

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Sir Alex Ferguson statue installed at Old Trafford on 23 November 2012.

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

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

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Sir 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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Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson underwent an emergency surgery on 5 May 2018 after having a brain haemorrhage.

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Sir Alex Ferguson made a recovery from the surgery and attended his first match at Old Trafford since then on 22 September 2018.

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In 1991, Sir 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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Sir Alex Ferguson was made an Inaugural Inductee of the English Football Hall of Fame in 2002 in recognition of his impact on the English game as a manager.

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In 2003, Sir Alex Ferguson became an inaugural recipient of the FA Coaching Diploma, awarded to all coaches who had at least ten years' experience of being a manager or head coach.

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Sir Alex Ferguson is the Vice-President of the National Football Museum, based in Manchester, and a member of the Executive Committee of the League Managers Association.

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On 5 November 2011, the Old Trafford North Stand was officially renamed the Sir Alex Ferguson Stand in honour of his 25 years as manager of Manchester United.

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Sir Alex Ferguson is the second-most decorated manager in European football competitions with seven honours, behind only Carlo Ancelotti.

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

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Sir Alex Ferguson is the first manager in the history of the English league to win three consecutive league titles, which he did twice.

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

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