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Sunday, May 12, 2013

Farewell Fergie! It’s a glorious exit for Sir Alex Ferguson after 27 years as Man Utd. boss (PHOTOS)

Farewell Fergie! It’s a glorious exit for Sir Alex Ferguson after 27 years as Man Utd. boss (PHOTOS):
Rapturous applause: Sir Alex Ferguson walks out onto the Old Trafford pitch for the last time as boss
Outgoing Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson described his time at Old Trafford as ‘the most fantastic experience of my life.’
In an emotional speech following the full-time whistle of his side’s 2-1 victory against Swansea City, Ferguson was given his special moment in front of the adoring fans.
He began by thanking the club, the staff and the players over the years for supporting him throughout the years.
‘I have been very fortunate to be able to manage some of the greatest players int he country, let alone Manchester United,’ continued Ferguson.
‘All of these players here today have represented the club the proper way, they won the championship in fantastic fashion, so well done to the players.’
It was a fitting tribute to signal the end of Sir Alex Ferguson’s tenure as Manchester United boss as his side secured a 2-1 victory at home to Swansea City on an emotional day at Old Trafford.
Sir Alex Ferguson today arrived at Old Trafford to manage his team in a match for the final time.
Retirement beckons for the 71-year-old Manchester United manager, who has overseen a whopping 13 Premier League title successes as well as two Champions League victories.
The Red Devils, who will be managed by Everton boss David Moyes next season, face Swansea City today in a match that kicked off at 4pm – but Wayne Rooney was not included in the squad.
Paul Scholes was chosen as anticipated after also announcing his retirement yesterday, but Rooney was not named by Sir Alex, who said on Wednesday that his 27-year reign is ending.
Manchester United were leading 1-0 in the game at half-time after Javier Hernandez scored.
Sir Alex stated in today’s programme notes: ‘I must pay tribute to my family. Their love and support has been essential.
‘My wife Cathy has been the key figure throughout my career, providing a bedrock of stability and encouragement. I would like to thank them all for a staggering level of professional conduct and dedication.
‘Their backing and Sir Bobby Charlton in particular gave me the confidence and time to build a club rather than just a team.
‘The Glazer family have provided me with the platform to manage Manchester United to the best of my ability. And I have been fortunate to work with a talented and trustworthy chief executive in David Gill.’
The move by Sir Alex to leave out Rooney – who was sold to United from Everton by Moyes in 2004 – has increased speculation that the striker could be on his way out of the club.
Great respect: Sir Alex emerges from a guard of honour before his last home match in charge of the club
Great respect: Sir Alex emerges from a guard of honour before his last home match in charge of the club
Interested party: Sir Alex Ferguson's final home game as Manchester United boss was watched by his wife Cathy (right)Interested party: Sir Alex Ferguson’s final home game as Manchester United boss was watched by his wife Cathy (right)
Impressive spectacle: Sir Alex applauds as he takes to the pitch for his last home game in charge of the clubImpressive spectacle: Sir Alex applauds as he takes to the pitch for his last home game in charge of the club
Support: Manchester United manager Sir Alex signs autographs after arriving on the pitch at Old TraffordSupport: Manchester United manager Sir Alex signs autographs after arriving on the pitch at Old Trafford
Emotional: Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson reacts after arriving on the pitch at Old TraffordEmotional: Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson reacts after arriving on the pitch at Old Trafford
United insisted on Wednesday the England striker was not for sale, but a source said Rooney has held talks with Sir Alex in recent weeks and indicated he wanted to leave.
‘I must pay tribute to my family. Their love and support has been essential’
Sir Alex Ferguson
Those discussions took place before Sir Alex announced he was retiring at the end of the season. The United legend stunned football when he announced he was stepping down.
Only last weekend, in his programme notes for the match against Chelsea, Sir Alex – who has won 38 trophies during his reign. including five FA Cups – insisted he wanted to carry on indefinitely.
Sir Alex, who previously managed Aberdeen, took over at United in 1986 after the sacking of Ron Atkinson. His first trophy was in 1990 as United beat Crystal Palace 1-0 in an FA Cup final replay.
Appreciation: Manchester United manager Sir Alex shakes hands with supporters as he takes to the standsAppreciation: Manchester United manager Sir Alex shakes hands with supporters as he takes to the stands
Making his way: Manchester United Manager Sir Alex Ferguson takes his seat in the dugout for the last timeMaking his way: Manchester United Manager Sir Alex Ferguson takes his seat in the dugout for the last time
Hotseat: Sir Alex takes his place before kick off in the Barclays Premier League match against Swansea CityHotseat: Sir Alex takes his place before kick off in the Barclays Premier League match against Swansea City
Last home game: Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson arrives at Old Trafford ahead of the match
Sir Alex Ferguson
Last home game: Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson arrives at Old Trafford ahead of the match today
Retiring: Red Devils manager Sir Alex walks into Old Trafford ahead of today's Barclays Premier League match Retiring: Red Devils manager Sir Alex walks into Old Trafford ahead of today’s Barclays Premier League matchMeanwhile Scholes said he is happy for his retirement to slip under the radar as Sir Alex also bade farewell to Old Trafford.
The United midfielder announced his retirement for a second time yesterday, having resumed his career in January 2012 after initially quitting the game at the end of the 2010-11 season.
He is notoriously media-shy and joked that the news surrounding Sir Alex’s retirement – plus continued speculation about Rooney’s future, had given him the opportunity to slip away quietly.
‘It couldn’t be any better could it?’ Scholes said. ‘(The speculation of) Wayne Rooney asking for a transfer – there’s not much else that can go well for me. Yeah, it’s the perfect weekend for me.’
Tribute: Supporters wave red flags before Sir Alex Ferguson's last home game in charge of Manchester UnitedTribute: Supporters wave red flags before Sir Alex Ferguson’s last home game in charge of Manchester United
A Manchester United supporter holding a mask of retiring manager Alex Ferguson prepares to take a picture outside Old Trafford
A Manchester United fan shows her appreciation for manager Sir Alex Ferguson, prior to the game
Capturing the moment: A Manchester United supporter holding a mask of Sir Alex Ferguson prepares to take a picture outside Old Trafford (left), where another fan holds up a sign showing her appreciation (right)
Souvenirs: Manchester United fans pass a vendor selling masks depicting retiring manager Sir Alex Ferguson Souvenirs: Manchester United fans pass a vendor selling masks depicting retiring manager Sir Alex Ferguson
Wow: Manchester United fans hold banners before the Barclays Premier League match against Swansea CityWow: Manchester United fans hold banners before the Barclays Premier League match against Swansea City
Celebration: Manchester United fans wave flags before the match against Swansea City at Old Trafford todayCelebration: Manchester United fans wave flags before the match against Swansea City at Old Trafford today
Read more: Daily Mail

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