Happy Fergie in Mood to Outlast Grant

The Mail on Sunday (London, England), September 23, 2007 | Go to article overview

Happy Fergie in Mood to Outlast Grant


Byline: BOB CASS

SIR ALEX FERGUSON will face his 10th Chelsea manager this afternoon.And, if the Manchester United bosss demeanour as he relaxed in the afternoonsunshine on the terrace at Lisbons Pestana Palace Hotel last week was anythingto go by, it would seem a safe bet that Avram Grant is not going to be the lastof his Stamford Bridge adversaries. Far from being weighed down by age, by theunrelenting pressure to succeed and by keeping one step ahead of a posse ofrivals desperate to gun him down, Ferguson is positively thriving. My appetiteis as strong as ever, he declared. I feel invigorated about what I do. I lovegoing into the training ground every day and if youre working in that kind ofenvironment, it makes you feel good to get up in the morning. If youre enjoyingyour work there are no problems and I enjoy my work. It is almost as ifFerguson is drawing eternal youth from the pack of young bloods he has gatheredat Old Trafford. His ability to engender respect and admiration from boys fromBrazil, Argentina, Portugal, eastern Europe, China, South Korea, spain andFrance as well as those who speak with more familiar tongues, is a remarkabletestament to his man-management abilities. And while he once revealed to methat he would favour Carlos Queiroz as his successor, it is clear that the65-year-old Scot will be a lot longer in the tooth before he is prepared tohand over the reigns. As a manager you must have an inner determination andresolve to succeed or you will buckle under the weight of responsibility. Ihave seen managers change because of the state of the job, he observed.

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