Ed blogs on Sir Alex Ferguson and the relegation battle
Ed Chamberlin blogs about Sir Alex Ferguson retiring as Manchester United manager and the relegation battle.
Last Updated: 09/05/13 6:11pm
That shows the impact he has had on the sport. The most successful manager in the history of English football deciding to retire is the biggest story in Premier League history.
Sir Alex has been a manager for my entire lifetime and in those 39 years has won a staggering 49 trophies. It's hard to imagine football without him. In his time at Old Trafford he managed to build successful team after team, whilst also building a club. The modern Manchester United, with its vast global appeal, is largely down to one man.
From his first game in charge at Manchester United against Oxford in old Division One on November 8th 1986, watched by just 13,545 fans at the Manor Ground all the way through to this Sunday's coronation, he has transformed Manchester United from laughing stock to the ultimate modern day football club. It has been an incredible journey for United fans. In that time Sir Alex won more trophies (38) than any other manager in English football history, including the 13 Premier League titles.
The story sparked a betting frenzy with Sky Bet. David Moyes was 20/1 to become the next Manchester United manager on Friday. I suspected nothing when we were at Old Trafford for Super Sunday but money was starting to arrive for the Everton manager and by Monday morning he was Skybet's new favourite.
When the news broke of Sir Alex's retirement at around 9am on Wednesday morning Sky Bet were still 8/11 Moyes, 6/5 Mourinho but the 8/11 disappeared very quickly and by Wednesday evening Moyes was long odds-on. Gary Neville, who understands better than anyone the way that United work, described the potential appointment of Moyes as a decision that makes sense.
Super Sunday is going to be a bit special now and I'll be joined by a few Manchester United legends. It is going to be an honour and a privilege to present Sir Alex Ferguson's final Premier League game at Old Trafford. Seeing Sir Alex lift the trophy for a 13th and final time as manager is going to be one of those iconic sporting moments.
At the other end of the table on Tuesday night there will have been seven Premier League managers breathing major sighs of relief. We already had a unique situation and the tightest situation at the bottom in Premier League history and a Wigan win against Swansea would have sparked 'relegation carnage.' You could sense panic amongst fans around the country and sides that thought they were safe suddenly needed to come back from their sun beds and re-focus on the relegation battle.
However, Wigan's defeat changes all that. Roberto Martinez's now have the FA Cup Final on Saturday and will have to get something at Arsenal three days later to have any chance of surviving.
No wonder they are now 1/4 to be relegated. The Cup Final at Wembley against Manchester City will be physically and emotionally draining plus they will be up against an Arsenal side needing a win in their bid to secure Champions League football. One thing guaranteed is that Wigan will have a go and won't die wondering but this looks a tough task.
This week was the last Monday Night Football of the season. It was enjoyable to reminisce after the game on Monday night as it's been a lot of fun to present alongside Gary. My favourite Neville quote from a long shortlist was when I asked which was his favourite Premier League ground to visit. Answer: "The Emirates. They have a great buffet."
There is some top sport going on in May. What a great time of year this is for racing. Hot on the heels of the Guineas are Derby and Oaks trials with the May Meetings at Chester this week then York. I'm particularly looking forward to seeing the reappearance of Liber Nauticus, hopefully in the Musidora on the Knavesmire. There's also the ongoing Giro d'Italia, Spanish Grand Prix and TPC at Sawgrass.
However, on Sunday the eyes of the sporting world will be on one man.