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20/05/2013 09:08

Papers: Sir Alex send-off

Michael Walker writes in the Daily Mail...

Ferguson’s super send-off
Extraordinary was the career, extraordinary was the send-off. It began with a 3-3 draw at Forfar Athletic in 1974 and ended with a 5-5 pantomime. These are the bookends of Sir Alex Ferguson’s miraculous, epic voyage through football management. And at the end, the very end, Ferguson hesitated.  A man who has always understood what a famed preacher called ‘the fierce urgency of now’ had to be ushered forward. Ferguson was standing with his players at the end of 90 minutes that did nothing for a Premier League defender’s reputation. All were gathered on the 18-yard line at The Hawthorns, all bar Paul Scholes of course, who had stalked off. At last Ferguson responded to his players’ promptings and moved forward alone to accept one final ovation from the 2,600 reds in the Smethwick Road End. It was noisy, a word Ferguson recognised with a bow. But this was all about one man: Alex Ferguson, born Govan, 1941. He is carrying a slight limp, evidence of the hip operation to come. Everything about the day was a Ferguson last. One man, one last game and one last debrief. Everyone understood. All eyes were glued to one last walk down one last tunnel. One man disappearing. Yet it felt like the going out of a vast tide.

Elsewhere, The Sun’s Shaun Custis pays tribute to the boss, explaining why “it is hard to believe we will never see the manager supreme in a dugout again.” On a less positive note, former Liverpool defender Alan Hansen questions the quality of United’s squad in The Telegraph, saying “the club will now witness the dawn of a new era and sustaining success at Old Trafford will be a really hard job for David Moyes.”

Meanwhile, The Sun also claims Sir Alex has told his players not to call him ‘Boss’ now that he has retired.

More: Blog: A final farewellCarrick: Time to move on | Chicha's debt to Sir Alex

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