It’s one thing when the Sun and the Daily Mirror insist that someone is on his way out, but when both the Telegraph and The Times claim that according to sources around Manchester United, Alex Ferguson will be announcing his retirement, it does become more than just meaningless shouting into the wind.
The facts? Alex Ferguson is getting older, and he will be undergoing hip surgery once the season is over, something he’s been putting off for quite some time. Aside from that? All rumors. According to the British media, United players have been told to get ready for a major announcement quite soon, which leads everyone to believe it will be Ferguon, who has been the manager of the club since 1986 and acted as a manager in general since 1974.
Ferguson himself? According to the programme for the match against Chelsea, he’s planning on staying and try and lead the club to more current and future success. But the fact that he used the word we doesn’t mean he’s not going to step down. It just means that he feels anything the club does from now on has something to do with him, and he’s a part of it, even if he does step down because of his health getting in the way.
The club itself has remained silent on the matter, but their involvement in the New York Stock Exchange means that if such a significant development is about to occur, they are forced to report it. If the rumors and news begin to affect trading, they’ll probably be forced to release some words of guidance and assurance, and most of all release information, to the investors.
Suddenly, all the talk of succession is back on the table, even though nothing has been confirmed. The last United have spoke of the matter, Ferguson wasn’t planning on stepping down before 2015, which might lead everyone to believe that some unfortunate developments have occurred since that Christmas meeting. David Moyes’ name has come up quite often in recent days, and it is rumors Ferguson is quite fond of him.
Pep Guardiola would have been his favorite choice, but the Spaniard has already elected to go to Bayern Munich. Jose Mourinho’s timing of leaving Real suddenly becomes a lot more suspicious, but he seems to be heading to Chelsea. However, Abramovich is unlikely to give Mourinho the €20 million buy out clause he needs to get out of his Real Madrid contract, while Real are not in favor of sacking him and paying him €10 million in restitution.