Ferguson stepping down as Man United manager, Moyes reportedly lined up as successor

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson


The Theater of Dreams is going to have a distinctly different feel next season.

Manchester United confirmed Tuesday night’s rumors as manager Sir Alex Ferguson announced on Wednesday that he is retiring at the end of the season after 27 years as manager. Ferguson will become a club ambassador and a member of the Board of Directors once he steps away from the touchline.

“The decision to retire is one that I have thought a great deal about and one that I have not taken lightly. It is the right time,” Ferguson told ManUtd.com. “Going forward, I am delighted to take on the roles of both Director and Ambassador for the club. With these activities, along with my many other interests, I am looking forward to the future.”

Long rumored to be the potential replacement for Sir Alex Ferguson, Everton manager David Moyes appears ready to get his chance.

According to reports out of England, Moyes will be announced as the next Manchester United manager by Thursday, and will leave the Merseyside club that he has called home since 2002. The Scotland-born manager is a three time manager of the year, leading Everton to top half finishes in all but three seasons in charge.

Manchester United would only be the third managerial position for the 50-year-old since retiring as a player in 1999. His first job was as manager of Preston North End.

Reactions have begun to pour in from around the world as fans, players, and officials pay tribute to Ferguson. Since first taking over Manchester United in 1986, the 71-year-old manager won 37 titles, including twice in the Champions League, five FA Cup’s, and 13 Premier League championships.

Ferguson is given the chance to go out on top, having lead his team to their 20th league title this season. His final match in charge will be on May 19, at West Bromwich Albion.

What do you think of the news? Shocked to see Ferguson stepping down, or think it’s the right time? Like Moyes as a replacement or do you think Manchester United should have tried for Jose Mourinho?

Share your thoughts below.


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105 Responses to Ferguson stepping down as Man United manager, Moyes reportedly lined up as successor

  1. RK says:

    I’m sure the Glazers will want to hire an American — Bradley! Arena!

    • ed - houston says:

      Don’t be silly, even if they wanted to it would never happen.

    • Rory says:

      Sounds like it’s David Moyes… but I haven’t seen white smoke coming out of the chimney at Old Trafford yet.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Sorry but I think those two would be better than some of the hacks like Pardew at Newcastle. Now, for ManU, another story.

      Also, if it’s Moyes, I’ll be interested what he does. I think he’s done well by over-achieving with a mid level club on a budget. But I don’t think that’s the same thing, necessarily, as knowing how to run the table with a stacked side. I mean, does finishing second in the FA Cup, or squeaking into the CL, actually prepare you to win those same competitions, which is the standard ManU will judge him by? People forget Sir Alex had an unusual degree of success with Aberdeen before Man U, ie, broke the old firm monopoly and won some SPL titles and Scottish Cups. He also coached Scotland in the ’86 World Cup…..

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        Sir Alex actually won UEFA CWC and the Euro Supercup with Aberdeen.

      • Josh D says:

        As a United fan since the mid-90s, before it was the fairweather thing to do, Fergie was a grandfather figure who visited on a Saturday or Sunday morning. I’ll miss his gum chewing and celebration hopping.

        As for Moyes… Please God no. He’s not a winner, he has no relationship to the club, and the style of play his players play (say that ten times) is dreadful.

        Give me Ole or Klopp.

        • Old School says:

          United’s style of play is attractive?

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          A variation on that theme would be whether Everton’s particular style — an underdog’s defensive approachused by teams like the blues and Stoke — is even what you want for an overdog team.

          I’d think you’d either go ruthlessly negative….Mourinho, I am going for a shutout….or sign someone with more of a continental passing approach……Swansea type play. And, more to the point, I think we both agree that you should come to ManU with some wins under your belt somewhere. Even as a CFC fan my first instinct when I heard Fergie was gone was to think this was Mourinho’s time to succeed his buddy. He has the CV and the winning and could be the sort who could hang around awhile, like Fergie, if the relationships were right. I mean, I don’t think anyone blames him for the friction with Roman.

          But selfishly I’ll be content if it plays out this way. I think ManU’ll be shopping for a replacement in a few years because beyond a few reaaaaaally talented players like VanPersie this was a fairly flawed ManU champion that Fergie managed to gel enough to get 3-2 type results week after week in spite of some defensive weakness and deGea. I’m not entirely sold Moyes can accomplish the same.

      • Ernie says:

        As a Magpie fan, I wish they would’ve taken Pardew.

    • ld says:

      multiple sources tell me that Caleb Porter is the current frontrunner to succeed Fergie

  2. Nate Dollars says:

    good riddance.

    • James says:

      Seriously? Even as an avid Arsenal fan I have to applaud Fergie. Have some respect.

      • Nate Dollars says:

        good for you. the FA, the english media, and the soccer world in general put up with his increasingly embara$$ing antics for far too long.

        he may earned plaudits for winning a lot, but i’ll save my respect for people who actually deserve it.

      • Old School says:

        You can respect his accomplishments but that doesn’t mean you have to respect the man.

        A lot of people don’t respect Fergie as a man and find him to be a bully/whiner.

    • Ernie says:

      Damn sckraight. GTFO, “Sir” Alex. Wee club from the north east says “bye bye now”.

  3. Michael F. SBI Mafia Original says:

    Shocked! As a Man U fan I new it was coming one of these days but nothing can prepare you for this news. Moyes would be a great choice. I thought they may go for Ole as he took a Norwegian side that never won anything and turned them into champions. But when you think of the enormity of leading the conglomerate known as Man U I definitely see the need for more experience. Mourinho was never a real consideration in my mind as he never stays anywhere for more then three years. That’s not the United way. Looks like I’ll be glued to the tele and Twitter the next few days waiting for the announcement.

    But I have to wonder, with Gill announcing his resignation, and now SAF, is there something bigger going on behind the scenes making this happen? Maybe the Glazers are readying a sale, maybe there were internal disagreements with the owners and the Board…thoughts?

  4. William the Terror says:

    This is a game changer. I really thought the Special One would have flown to Manchester overnight to prostrate himself at the door of David Gill, or whoever will make the new manager decision.

    Moyes? Not so sure he is the right guy for such a big club, but best of luck to him.

    Sir Alex, a tip of the hat.

    • James says:

      One of the biggest points Fergie always made was that the club is bigger than anyone one player or coach. Murinho could never have adapted to that mentality, way too much ego and baggage. I think Moyes is an excellent choice – thrifty, loyal, and an superb coach.

    • solles says:

      Yeah Moyes has been outstanding at Everton with minimal resources, but that is no guarantee he will succeed with practically unlimited resources, particularly as ManUtd have many more arrogant ego driven mercenaries in their squad than Everton ever will. Sir Alex’s greatest strength to me was managing those egos, partly becuase his ego was always the biggest one in the room no matter who else was there.

      Personally im not sad to see Fergie go, I was always annoyed by his whiny arrogance and his rudolph red nose.

  5. Dominican Lou says:

    I’ve already submitted my resume to Manchester United, along with my latest save file from Football Manager. I’m sure I’ll get the job!

  6. Laszlo says:

    I wonder if Moyes brings Timmy to ManU with him? I’m not sold on DeGea as a true top notch goal keeper. Feel bad for Everton fans. I wonder who they bring in to replace Moyes?

    • RK says:

      Didn’t DeGea just win keeper of the year?

    • fischy says:

      Those are the two big matzo balls hanging out there.

      De Gea is a great shot stopper, and Ferguson ma still have some input there on who the keeper is…but it would be very interesting if Moyes prefers Howard.

      And, with Everton still on the edge of playing in Euro competition, the coaching job could be a prize plum….especially if Howard stays put.

      • Rory says:

        Roberto Martinez is already measuring the curtains in Everton’s offices.

        • nic d "the tx 2 stepper" says:

          I Hope so. AND if that is the case, I hope Timmy stays put and Jozy is brought in to show Anichebe how to score some goals!

          NEW RUMOUR!

          Altidore to Everton … Can’t I dream.

    • Monty says:

      It probably won’t happen. Fans always assume that a new manager will try to sign all their former players when that is rarely the case. He will stick with De Gea since he is one of the best young GKs in the world.

    • The Imperative Voice says:

      Little known fact that Timmy Howard was a ManU GK property from 03-07 before Everton. Not sure he’d want to go back although Moyes might weigh in favor.

      • solles says:

        little known? maybe if you’re 13.

        • The Imperative Voice says:

          Couldn’t be all that well known if people are making Timmy Howard to Man U rumors, as it would be an obvious hitch in that idea. All due respect, blah blah blah.

          • solles says:

            rumors…on Soccer By Ives? I havent seen that anywhere else.

            • Rory says:

              Didn’t Howard have an absolute howler of a game in a cup final or something like that for Man U? (Sorry, at the time I only followed the national team and didn’t pay any attention to club soccer let alone EPL). I remember some podcasters saying it was so bad that Howard would never be accepted there again.

      • Dinho says:

        not sure how that’s “little known” :)

    • solles says:

      Howard is a better keeper than the last time he was at Manchester United undoubtedly, but DeGea is still better.

      • The Imperative Voice says:

        If deGea was any good ManU wouldn’t be weighing their options.

        I think Howard is one of the top few EPL keepers but has hit the age range where people start to get hurt and/or fade.

        • solles says:

          Are ManUtd “weighing their options” though? Really? Asking as I dont really know but as DeGea had a very good season I wonder if thats just paper talk..

          • Rory says:

            Brad Guzan to Man United. Moyes likes Americans, Guzan is young (for a keeper), pretty dang good and not his national team’s first choice so there’s no panic if he rides the bench to develop.

            In other news: I like making up rumors. Did you hear about Bob Bradley being Hull’s first choice for when their current coach gets fired next season?

          • The Imperative Voice says:

            With some of the mistakes he made and how many 4-3 or 3-2 type games they played — and won, hence the title — I’m not sure he’s their long term answer. He’s not bad but is he good enough to hold together for a CL run to the title?

            There may also be an issue where he was Fergie’s pick, hit and miss, new coach may clear that board and start fresh since he’s not perfection incorporate. Kind of like I expect Torres to be tossed overboard if Mourinho replaces Benitez. If your team has a flaw then a coaching change and you retain the flaw, it eventually becomes your mistake. I think they can do better.

  7. V-8 says:

    I can only think of the movie ‘Fletch': “Yeah, but I mean the very end…That was extremely sudden.”

  8. el paso tx mike says:

    mou for sure will be there with christiano and falcao. then ferguson to ny2 MLS

    • Broadsthooligans says:

      of course Ferguson to NY2. Or better yet to the Cosmos in the NASL to make some real competition for MLS. lol

  9. V-8 says:

    How pissed is Mark Hughes?

  10. Scott e Dio93 says:

    End of era, this is going to be hard role to replace.

    • Rory says:

      Yeah, the next coach will practically have to build the team from scratch.

      • Strider257 says:

        Not quite, there is still some good young talent there: Jones, Raphael, Kagawa, Hernandez, Wellbeck, etc. However, replacements for some of the older players was always coming soon: Ferdinand, Giggs, Scholes, Evra, even van Persie will likely only be there 2-3 years. I am really hoping it is Moyes and interested to see what he can do with a real budget.

  11. Stephen says:

    I was hoping Moyes would be the next USMNT coach, so I guess that won’t be happening.

    • Tony in Quakeland says:

      This destorys my one man Moyes for USA campaign that I have been running for years. Sigh..

      • biff says:

        I would bet 25 cents that after Klinsmann leaves, USMNT coaches will be only Americans.

        • Nate Dollars says:

          i will take that bet, if only because there’s no way you could be certain that the *next* coach wouldn’t be foreign.

          …wait, that means i couldn’t win either.

  12. Hunt Daddy says:

    Moyes to United and Hughes to Everton?

    • Strider257 says:

      Considering how poorly Hughes did at QPR it is hard to take him too seriously as an EPL manager, but I’m sure someone somewhere is willing to overlook his poor recent choices/decisions regarding which players to buy.

    • Monty says:

      Roberto Martinez will probably be the new Everton boss.

  13. ChiTown says:

    All teams will play 10 minutes of stoppage time in honor.

    • ed - houston says:

      old joke, move on….

      • Old School says:

        …and by “old”, do you mean past it’s time? In your estimation, is it 9 minutes past it’s time or 10 minutes past it’s time?

    • Brain Guy says:

      I can’t help it:

      With added time, his retirement won’t take effect until October.

  14. biff says:

    Does Moyes like Landon Donovan enough to bring him to Man U like he did at Everton? Or is that totally out of the question at a powerhouse like Man U.

    • ed - houston says:

      Landon is too old now.

      • solles says:

        Landon has said he’d only want to go to Everton but now that Moyes might be leaving, I think he’ll finish his career in MLS.

    • Rory says:

      Oooooh… Here I was thinking only Tim Howard would be swamped with pointless transfer rumors.

    • KMac says:

      If / whenMoyes comes to pass, is a loan for LD out of the question? His contract is up end of 2013… if he is playing well enough by winter to get World Cup shape, maybe a loan or even a 1 yr contract…Giggs is way older, albeit maybe more of a MU fixture…?

    • beto says:

      +1 not a completely ridiculous idea! i could see Landon doing well in that role, especially if he shows this spring/summer that he still plays at the highest level.

  15. Mig says:

    I feel like 12th century Europeans would have felt reading “Genghis Khan to retire”

  16. biff says:

    And for anyone who thinks Man U would consider replacing Sir Alex with Jose Mourinho, please look at this video. No way does Man U want that kind of childish, self-centered behavior on the sidelines. Not to mention that Jose is no longer a great coach and destroys locker rooms.

    link to youtube.com

    • RK says:

      Be Champions.

      • Rory says:

        Man United sources have already said that Moyes is the new boss and Mourinho was NEVER in serious discussion. That pretty much tells you everyone knows he has a contract in place at Chelsea

    • Old School says:

      The same disdain you obviously have for Mourinho is the same disdain many had for Sir Alex.

      So, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, right?

      • biff says:

        you are right, I am not a fan of Jose and I think Chelsea would be making a horrible mistake by hiring him. Can you imagine any other top coaches acting like that? Sir Alex or Jupp Heynckes or Jurgen Klopp or David Moyse or Brendan Rodgers.

        but I also am neither a Man U fan nor a Fergie fan. I will say, though, that this season I have come to respect Fergie a lot for his intense completive spirit at 71 years old. the turning point for me was the ridiculous Nana red card in the Real Madrid game, when Fergie had outfoxed Mourinho and Man U was cruising toward the CL semi-finals before the turkish ref did his thing with the red card. Fergie’s reaction on the sidelines, he wanted that game so bad at an age when most men are sitting on the front porch in rocking chairs, I developed a little bit of a soft spot for him.

    • solles says:

      lol those adjectives could be used for Ferguson very easily…

    • SonicDeathMonkey says:

      Right. United doesnt want childish, self-centered behavior on the sidelines. They are much more comfortable with the boorish, obnoxious, bullying behavior that SAF has been using for the past 15 or so years. :/

  17. Monty says:

    Ferguson has been the Man UTD manager for my entire life it will be weird to see him not manage the team in August.

  18. Dave says:

    All the best young coaches are in Germany these days. It would be fun to see Klopp at Old Trafford. #neverhappen

  19. JJ says:

    De Gea and Guzan straight swap and martinez to Everton would be very nice to see

  20. Old School says:

    People can say what they’d like but United have a new bully on the block: Man City.

    I fully believe Sir Alex gave very little concern for the CL this year and 100% of his focus was simply taking back the league, because he knew this would be his last hurrah.

    Ferguson knows Man City is going to come back even stronger next year, with more signings and more elite players and United will not be able to compete on the transfer market.

    The days of being the primary bully on the block were over for him. He could keep Chelsea at arms link simply because of the rotating door for their managers and he knew it.

    City is a different beast and one that he couldn’t contain permanently and he knew it. He’s leaving the fight now before he gets knocked to the canvas again.

    Typical Sir Alex.

    • Dave says:

      So how much Thorazine do they put in your water supply? #delusional

      • Old School says:

        Oh, right. A “United fan”, I presume. #apologist

        • Dave says:

          You could write the same post at Ferguson’s funeral: “By staging a fatal heart attack Sir Alex ducked out on the biggest challenge of his career just in the nick of time”. #psychotic

          • Old School says:

            Listen Erin Brockovich, your hashtags are adorable but you have poor taste in your man crushes.

            It’s that simple.

            • Dave says:

              I’m a fan of any team that employs a Yank. Since Man U to my knowledge does not currently have one on roster my sympathies lie elsewhere. #gohonefoss

  21. Kosh says:

    Thank you, SAF for your service and for realizing your dream – besting Liverpool.You have taken us to truly enviable heights and left us waaaay better than you found us. You, Sir, have sealed your place in the halls of legends – not only for Manchester United but for football as a whole. Though words cannot truly express our gratitude they are all we have – Thank you, Sir Alex. Thank you for your service.

    I certainly hope it is Moyes. I always wanted him for SAF’s successor. He’s git the class and has done wonders with so much less. He will never be SAF, as no one can, but he will be something great and I am confident he can keep us in the upper echelons of world football for many, many more years to come.

  22. Coach K says:

    To all those Man U haters I have just a few thoughts
    1) Say what you want about SIR Alex, but he has done more for soccer than all your so called super coaches in the EPL ? Yeah winning has a few sore losers along the way.He has been solid for 30+ years?
    2) I take my hat off to him as a super coach knowing how to juggle so many eggps and stars with dignity and respect ( EX Ronaldo has 0 but respect for the man)
    3) He is going out on top a little aged but time to turn the mantle to another young man who I think will do just fine Moyes
    4) Mourinho was all about self. Not so with Dave Moyes or Sir Alex They are about TEAM!

  23. beto says:

    No doubts at all SAF is a living legend and has done just about as much as a coach can do for a club. Congratulations to him on an amazing career.

    Moyes would be a great fit at ManU and as much as I prefer Everton to United, you have to be happy for the guy on getting a big promotion! I wouldn’t count out Jose Mourinho tho, he would also be a great fit and you know he really wants the job!

  24. M Vann says:

    Fergie has long respected and talked very favorably about Moyes. It’s always been known they have a strong, long-standing relationship. It would not surprise me in the least if Fergie hand picked Moyes. Fergie has earned that right and Moyes, in my opinion, is a class individual that could step right in to Old Trafford will little hiccups.

  25. SonicDeathMonkey says:

    If Moyes gets the job, I’ll be interested to see what becomes of Rooney. IIRC, he and Moyes weren’t exactly best buddies when he left Everton all those years ago.