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Dublin: 10°C Tuesday 13 April 2021

'One step forward, two steps back' for Manchester United this season - Ferguson

The ex-Gaffer also attempt to distance himself from the recruitment of David Moyes.

Happier times: Fred and Alec.
Happier times: Fred and Alec.

LEGENDARY MANCHESTER UNITED boss Alex Ferguson feels that the club have perhaps gone “one step forward, two steps back” this season but is convinced that Louis van Gaal is the man to lead them to success.

After the disastrous tenure of David Moyes last term, the Dutchman has endured a testing start to life at Old Trafford as he seeks to rebuild but secured a late draw with Premier League leaders Chelsea on Sunday.

Asked while promoting his updated autobiography at the Theatre Royal in London if he had faith in Van Gaal, Ferguson replied: “Absolutely. He’s the right man for that job.

“It’s a little bit one step forward, two steps back,” the Scot added of United’s season so far. ”[It's] looking at times like we are fragile at the back.”

Ferguson took the opportunity to claim that he had not been as closely involved in the hiring of Moyes last summer as had been widely believed.

While insisting that the notion that he had left his successor with an old and past-it squad upon his retirement was “an insult”, the 72-year-old declared that “my only advice to David was ‘keep Mike Phelan’,” a suggestion that went unheeded.

The Champions League-winning boss was also asked about some of his best signings, recalling how he had to fight to recruit a teenage Cristiano Ronaldo from Sporting Lisbon but denying that the Portuguese superstar was his most important addition to the club.

“Real Madrid and Arsenal were in for him too,” Ferguson recalled of Ronaldo. “I said we weren’t leaving until he was on the plane.

“The best signing was Carrington,” he contested. “The training ground will be there for 100 years.”

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