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31/12/2010 08:00,
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Brucey turns 50

second of my goals – but they forget it was big Pally [Gary Pallister] who put in the cross. I don’t know what the hell he was doing on the wing! It was the highlight of my playing career… I’m privileged to have played for that side.

The whole of Manchester United history might have been different without those goals…

Who knows? Everyone was nervous. The crowd were nervous, the players were nervous… I don’t know what would have happened if we’d lost. I’m sure Sir Alex Ferguson would agree that the first league title was the most difficult to win. But we did, and that game seemed to start a trend – how many times have United scored crucial, last-minute goals since then?

As a manager yourself, do you ever apply anything you learned from Sir Alex?

I could write a book about things I picked up from Sir Alex. But the one thing you associate with him, and would like to emulate, is his drive. He’s just got this complete and utter will to win. He doesn’t suffer fools. He sets high standards for himself and others, and he loves a fight. He never thinks he’s beaten, and always thinks he can win any game that he goes into. It’s the United way to always, always try and win a game. And that rubs off on you when you play under him.

What do you make of United’s season so far?

They are up there again, and you’d expect that. History will tell you that United always finish stronger than anybody else. They’re still the team to beat, I believe.

How happy have you been with the way Sunderland’s season has gone?

There’s obviously the one result I don’t want to talk about [losing to Newcastle], but apart from that it’s been a very

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