Sir Alex Ferguson 1986-2013 Infographic: Recounting His Manchester United Reign

Michael Cummings@MikeCummings37World Football Lead WriterMay 9, 2013

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - MAY 08:  A billboard of Manchester United players and manager Sir Alex Ferguson stands outside Old Trafford on the day he announced his retirement as club manager on May 8, 2013 in Manchester, England. Sir Alex Ferguson announced today that he is retiring as manager of Manchester United after 26 years.  (Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images)
Christopher Furlong/Getty Images

Sir Alex Ferguson will retire at the end of the season with his status as a legend of the modern game already secured.

The 71-year-old Scot has won 13 Premier League titles, five FA Cups and two UEFA Champions League crowns in a glittering 26-plus-year tenure at Old Trafford. Before coming to England, Ferguson also saw success in Scotland, winning the league title three times with Aberdeen.

"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 said (via CNN). "It was important to me to leave an organization in the strongest possible shape and I believe I have done so."

It's hard to argue with Ferguson on that. United recently won English title No. 20, a record, and the club has never been worth more financially. A strong squad is in place and with a few key additions, the Red Devils could contend for continental silverware next season.

Much will depend on Ferguson's successor. On Thursday, United announced David Moyes will succeed Ferguson, taking over July. Moyes, 50, has managed Everton since 2002.

"David is a man of great integrity with a strong work ethic. I've admired his work for a long time and approached him as far back as 1998 to discuss the position of assistant manager here," Ferguson said (per BBC Sport). "There is no question he has all the qualities we expect of a manager at this club."

We'll find out for sure about Moyes next season. For now, let's look back at Ferguson's brilliant career.