Having spent a couple of years writing down his best (and worst) moments about his time of being the Manchester United manager, Sir Alex Ferguson who retired this year, could not have found a better time to release his official autobiography.
He kicks off quite rightly talking about the moments leading up to his retirement – how he broke the news to everyone, especially the team. “My speech on the pitch was all off the cuff. I had no script. All I knew that I was not going to praise any individual. It was not about directors, the supporters or the players: it was about Manchester United Football Club.”
He told everyone to support the new manager David Moyes. “The club stood by me. All my staff stood by me. The players stood by me. So your job now is to stand by your new manager. That is important.”
Splitting up certain chapters to talk about certain players in detail, he dedicated each chapter to the big players he signed and who he had a rather questionable relationship with. He talks about David Beckham and how he saw him grow up and that he felt like a son to him but then he talks about Beckham choosing to be famous after falling in love with Victoria.
He also talks about his handling of Ryan Giggs, Roy Keane, Rio Ferdinand, Eric Cantona, Ruud van Nistelrooy as well as Wayne Rooney and Christiano Ronaldo.
He says that he criticised his players to keep them motivated and working hard. “Faced with the need to confront a player who had performed below our expectations, I might have said, ‘That was rubbish that,’ but then he would balance it out with a bit of encouragement. ’Why are you doing that? You’re better than that,’ which goes to show how he made it as a good manager sticking with the team for 27 years.
This book is a must read for Manchester United fans but it is also a must read for sport fans in general. Managers can pick up a few good tips from this book as well but also, strangely enough, whilst reading this book, it seemed like I went inside the mind of Ferguson. I got to know how he thinks like, why he thinks the way he does and so this book can also be a good read for psychologists.
I bought this book to read because I am very interested in legendary authoritative figures and what makes them so successful and how they become such a good leader. I am also very interested in psychology and found myself analysing bits from the book. I must say, I enjoyed the book tremendously and it was such an inspiring read as well. In a way, this book is saying not to give up from anything you do in life because Ferguson shows that working hard will be worth it in the end.
It is wonderfully written and crafted and it shows us the enthusiasm, the ambition and the determination of a man who has achieved a lot in his career. By reading this book, you would know that Ferguson is a proud man who retired as a winner.