Sir Alex Ferguson: Tributes and Highlights from His Old Trafford Goodbye
Sir Alex Ferguson's Old Trafford career is complete.
It has been an emotional week for everyone involved at Manchester United. Tributes have poured in from across the globe, with many footballers, ex-professionals and great rivals discussing the genius of a man who inhabited the Old Trafford dugout for 27 years (via The Guardian).
With his Old Trafford curtain now drawn, it's time to look back at Ferguson's final game and celebration in front of his adoring crowd. Could Manchester United send him off with a win? Read on to find out.
One More Time...
Manchester United fans prepare for battle ahead of Sir Alex Ferguson's final game at Old Trafford. Would it be a famous last victory or disappointing end to the manager's reign?
One fan was confident of the three points.
Awaiting Sir Alex Ferguson's Arrival
Old Trafford turned into a sea of red as Sir Alex and the teams readied themselves for entry. Decked out in flags marked "Champions 20:13", the rapturous noise created a party atmosphere that never dampened throughout.
There's Always One...
Many fans entered the stadium with homemade tributes to Sir Alex Ferguson and his run of trophies. This proud individual saluted the outgoing manager with a quick rerun of his success.
The Guard of Honour
Both Manchester United and Swansea City players entered the pitch early to form a guard of honour for Sir Alex. He arrived with the world watching, ready to do business for the last time in front of his home crowd.
In what could be analysed as a cheeky nod to "Fergie Time," Sir Alex was greeted with a fourth official board signalling his 26 years and 38 trophies at the club.
"SIR ALEX, COME HERE!"
Making his way to the dugout, many flans clambered to catch a glimpse of the legendary manager. Sir Alex wasted no time signing as many programs, shirts and posters as he could before the opening whistle.
All Smiles from the Famous Scot
Despite the serious faces of Mike Phelan and Rene Meulensteen, Sir Alex sat down with an almighty grin on his face. Although the stadium erupted with songs praising the 71-year-old gaffer, the man behind Meulensteen appeared to be focused something else...
There's the Fergie We Know
With proceedings underway, a jubilant Ferguson quickly showed his business face. Could Manchester United end his Old Trafford career in style?
The Champions Strike First
Javier Hernandez has been a forgotten man of late, but Sir Alex's decision to start the Mexican striker over Wayne Rooney paid off. Little Pea notched the first goal after 39 minutes and continued the party atmosphere.
After the match, Ferguson confirmed Rooney has asked to leave Manchester United in the summer (via BBC Sport).
Michu Does It Again
Swansea improved after the break. With 49 minutes on the clock, Michu once again proved why he is one of the season's best signings with a smart finish from a corner.
As the photo highlights, he also showed exactly what would happen if Sir Alex swallowed that famous chewing gum.
Another Legend Departs
Another legend was also saying goodbye to the Old Trafford faithful today. Paul Scholes departed the field with 25 minutes left and received a standing ovation from the fans he has served so well over the years.
Just for Old Time's Sake
As this tight encounter entered the last 10 minutes, Sir Alex checked his trusty watch for the final time. Could his side deliver?
His Name Is Rio
Of course they could.
Rio Ferdinand's winner came with three minutes remaining. The United defender, who Ferguson signed from rivals Leeds in 2002, also helped the side break another Premier League record by becoming the 20th individual to score for the Reds in one domestic season (via Opta).
Time to Say Farewell
20 Is the Magic Number
With the Premier League winners' medals dished out, Sir Alex thanked his players with a hug and handshake. The longest embrace was saved for Robin van Persie; the most influential goalscorer in United's 20th title triumph.
Premier League Champions 2012/13
Sir Alex Ferguson lifted the Premier League trophy alongside captain Nemanja Vidic and vice-captain Patrice Evra. In a touch of class, the retiring manager took centre stage in a position that has perhaps become natural over the years.
Bowing out a Winner
The rain continued to pour, but Sir Alex and his team didn't care one bit. As the celebrations concluded, the longstanding United manager continued to enjoy his final moments at the Theatre of Dreams.
One Last Triumph
Ferguson and Scholes exited the pitch together, both smiling and with winners' medals around their necks. The perfect finale for both.
The End of an Era
With his last Old Trafford appearance complete, Manchester United fans will take solace from Ferguson's decision to stay on as a club director (via The Independent). As we can see from the recently erected statue, he will continue to watch over United for as long as the stadium stands.
To Be Continued
One game remains in the Sir Alex Ferguson era. It is now time for Manchester United fans to prepare for a future with David Moyes. They will do so Premier League champions and with the hope that further United success is imminent.
Thank you, Sir Alex.
What were your favourite moments from Sir Alex Ferguson's goodbye? Let me know in the comments section and be sure to follow me on Twitter:
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