Monday, 13 May 2013
“I decided to retire last Christmas” – Sir Alex Ferguson
that he made the decision to quit football at Christmas.
The 71-year-old took charge of his last game at Old Trafford – a 2-1
win over Swansea City – and will be stepping down at the end of the
season, after making the announcement public last week.
The Scot who has been at the club for over 26 years, admitted that he
struggled to keep the news under wraps, after he first disclosed it to
"Probably last Christmas," he told Sky Sports after he was asked when
he decided to retire. "Basically, things changed when Cathy's [his
wife] sister died.
"She's isolated a lot now and I think I owe her a lot of my own time.
For 47 years she's been the leader of the family, looked after our
three sons, sacrificed for me, and now she's got all her
grandchildren: they all dote on her, and I think you know, she's lost
her best friend, her sister Bridget, and I think I owe her my own
"That was important. Also, to go out a winner, that is really
important at this club. That's the most important thing I ever wanted
to do here, to be a winner.
"It was very difficult. Sometimes I nearly blurted it out to the
family. We told our sons around about March. My brother didn't even
know until about Tuesday night, because I wanted to tell the players
first really, the players and my staff.
"But unfortunately those rumours came out – where they come from, you
never know. This club's like a sieve. Stuff leaks out that shouldn't
leak out, so we started to speed it up a bit."