Bet now with totesport - Free £25 bet!

Friday, November 04, 2011

A tribute to 'alex' by Simon Moult

Firstly of course the current edition of Red News - RN184 - is a special SAF-25 years mag which you can order/subscribe to at

Sir Alex Ferguson: The Official Manchester United Celebration of 25 Years at Old Trafford

During Alex Ferguson’s 25 years at Manchester United the club has gone so far. We’ve seen a few very important nay, defining, one-nil victories, lost a cup in 90 minutes, gained a cup in 92 minutes or thereabouts, the badge lost the football club and the team lost a grey kit. We’ve won silverware with kids and we’ve seen the men they became go on to dominate. We’ve lost guvnor’s, marvels, a babyface and a couple of red head’s along the way, we gained the greatest Dane and watched the greatest centre forward, that the worrrrrld has ever seen. That’s according the Eric the King song anyway and who dares argue when the Stretford End decides that?
We’ve seen a lot in those twenty five years but through it all, the ups, the downs (not Tommy Doc size downs but, yknow, the loss of a league championship or two and a few in Europe), the treble’s and the all important signatures on all important contracts. We’ve even created a few of the world’s greatest players, or at least been there to watch them become worthy of that tag. One man took us from nowhere to everywhere.
One man has been there through it all. While Knighton took his ball and went home and he was allowed to, and when Eric took his and wasn’t... one man was at the heart of all of it. Sir Alex Ferguson. The football club has grown around him, because of him, we’ve seen all the success because of the vision he had. When an outside pundit doubts the quality of the young team Manchester United fields, one man takes the flack because he knows what that team can produce. Sir Alex Ferguson.
Yes there are changes which still arguably divide our supporters to this day but in terms of running the football club, the company, the brand, the team, the players and the collective ego, the world is in absolutely no doubt who runs Manchester United. Sir Alex Ferguson.
When we say we have a lot to thank him for, we mean it, but we thank him every time we turn up to support our team. Every time we cheer, every time we yell, every time I try and defy the laws of ability by trying to jump myself and my wheelchair over the netting in front of me at Old Trafford because we’ve just scored, we are saying thank you.
Thank you for turning a cheeky phone call about buying Denis Irwin, into the moment Eric Cantona joined. Thank you for throwing on those boys at the Nou Camp in 1999. Thank you for sending the Manchester Evening News in to a pull out producing frenzy by signing Andy ‘Call me Andrew’ Cole for 7m from Newcastle and allowing Keith Gillespie to go in the other direction and take on Alan Shearer in a stand off. Thank you for signing Andrei Kanchelskis and giving my Dad a minor stroke when I told him I wanted that name on the back of my shirt (75p a letter, plus badges, and the number 14... he still hasn’t forgiven me).
Thank you for turning Paul Scholes into a legend, and David May into a superstar.
Thank you for the most electrifying highs, lows lower than a snakes belly, and thanks a million for the retirement rethink.
I remember the story about the American president (Harry S Truman if you wanted to know) who had the quotation on his desk in the White House, “the buck stops here”. It was his show of belief that every decision lay with him and with it , the responsibility for the direction of the entire country. Sir Alex Ferguson runs Manchester United the same way, always has and always will until he decides otherwise.
I’ve met the manager a few times, at social things and Manchester United functions and he carries that authority with him always. The first time I was near him was when he signed my autograph book at Wembley.
He signed it “alex”... nothing more needed to be said. The buck stops there.

Simon A Moult 2011 Written exclusively for Red News. Follow Simon @Moultyx


Post a Comment

<< Home