Sir Alex Ferguson has retired as manager of Manchester United and his record speaks for itself.

He is one of the most successful managers in the world, with Manchester United acquiring 37 trophies during his 26-year tenure.

He often used a heavy-handed approach to the media, the FA and the referees and thus there was a perception that he manipulated these bodies to get results for his team.

Here we will not discuss the conspiracy theories, but the actual legacy that Ferguson leave after his departure. 

His tactical legacy

Ferguson was smart to adapt different tactics with the passage of time but he was never an innovator.

He was a master of getting the best out of his players but he will not leave a lasting tactical legacy. He often used the tactical changes that Arsene Wenger, Jose Mourinho and even Rafael Benitez brought to the Premier League and used it to great effect - but there was never any great tactical initiative that he took himself. 

His records in Europe

Two Champions league trophies in 26 years at one of the biggest clubs in the world isn’t a great record. Winning the Champions League is by no means an easy feat but Ferguson had an advantage over his competitors in the continent and that was job security.

He should have taken advantage of the fact that he was at the helm for so long and build a team that dominated Europe for a sustained period of time like Real Madrid, Liverpool, Bayern Munich and Barcelona.

His youth policy

Ferguson is often lauded for his youth policy but on closer inspection it might not be the case.

Barring the famous quartet of David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, Gary Neville and Paul Scholes, Ferguson was unable to induct players from the academy to his first-team squad.

In recent years his reluctance to play young players in the team has resulted in players leaving the club. In the current team only Jonny Evans and Tom Cleverley have come through the academy and they, too, are first choices for their positions.

Thus it is easy to say that Ferguson was unable to make a youth structure similar to major clubs around Europe. 

The fact that Ferguson had the post at a major European club and was unable to leave any lasting imprint on the football world makes his achievements superficial.

He may be the most overrated manager in the world. What do you think?


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