Sir Alex Ferguson had something for everyone.
For Manchester United supporters there were the titles, the Champions League triumphs and the incredible players brought into the team.
For everyone else there were the side-splitting press conferences and clever one-liners, many of which were meant to antagonize but ended up creating a figure almost as famous for his personality as his record of success.
Following is a selection of some classic Fergie quotes, and if we’ve missed any that you particularly fancy, feel free to add them to the comments section below.
“If I’d tried it 100 times or a million times it wouldn’t happen again. If it did, I would carry on playing.”
“Sometimes you look in a field and you see a cow and you think it’s a better cow than the one you’ve got in your own field. It’s a fact, right? And it never really works out that way.”
On seeing Ryan Giggs for the first time at The Cliff.
“He was 13 and just floated over the ground like a cocker spaniel chasing a piece of silver paper in the wind.”
On Manchester City’s title ambitions in 2009.
“Sometimes you have a noisy neighbor. You cannot do anything about that. They will always be noisy. You just have to get on with your life, put your television on and turn it up a bit louder.”
On former United right-back Gary Neville, who stands 5'11".
“If he was an inch taller he’d be the best centre-half in Britain. His father is 6'2". I’d check the milkman.”
“I think he was an angry man. He must have been disturbed for some reason. I think you have got to cut through the venom of it and hopefully he’ll reflect and understand what he said was absolutely ridiculous.”
“It’s getting tickly now—squeaky-bum time, I call it.”
On Liverpool, who had 16 titles to United’s seven when he was appointed in 1986.
“My greatest challenge is not what’s happening at the moment. My greatest challenge was knocking Liverpool right of their f***ing perch. And you can print that.”
On winning the Champions League in 1999.
“I can’t believe it. I can’t believe it. Football. Bloody hell.”
On planning his retirement—in 2008.
“I won’t be doing a Bobby Robson and be a manager when I am 70. It is just knowing when to quit. Football is like a drug which is difficult to give up.”