Alex Ferguson

Finally, Alex Ferguson decides it’s time to go. It is, of course, an impressive achievement, and the flexibility with which he’s adapted to changing times is very impressive. To get rid of star players, bring in new talent, adapt to changing financial regimes, fine-tune the tactics but keep on winning is no mean feat, and you can’t quarrel with the statistics. But I shan’t be sad to see him go. There’s always been a ruthlessness there which is very unattractive – the needling of other managers, the systematic bullying of referees. The Old Trafford banner which says “We’re not arrogant – just better” is nothing like as simple as it thinks it is. How did Man U win the title this year? Not by playing the best football, but by getting Van Persie. If he’d chosen to go to City, they might well have won the title. It still comes down to Ferguson, because presumably it’s him that guided Van Persie’s choice, but I’ll look forward to a different atmosphere next season.