Alex Ferguson thanks medical staff for saving his life

Former Man United manager speaks publicly for first time since brain haemorrhage

A screengrab taken from MUTV of  Alex Ferguson speaking publicly for the first time since undergoing emergency brain surgery in May. Photograph:  MUTV/PA Wire

A screengrab taken from MUTV of Alex Ferguson speaking publicly for the first time since undergoing emergency brain surgery in May. Photograph: MUTV/PA Wire

 

Alex Ferguson thanked the medical staff who saved his life as he spoke publicly for the first time on Thursday having suffered a brain haemorrhage and undergone emergency surgery in early May.

The 76-year-old former Manchester United manager looked healthy and his voice remained steady during a 48-second video message released by the Old Trafford club in which he also pledged to watch José Mourinho’s side play live during the coming football season.

“Hello. Just a quick message first of all to thank the medical staff at Macclesfield, Salford Royal and Alexandra hospitals,” said the most successful football manager in the history of the British football, from what appeared to be his garden. “Believe me, without those people, who gave me such great care, I would not be sitting here today. So, thank you from me and my family. Thank you very much.”

Ferguson, wearing a smart lilac shirt and speaking directly into the camera, took the opportunity to also offer heartfelt thanks to those well-wishers who inundated both his family and old club with messages of support after he suffered the brain haemorrhage at his house in Cheshire nearly three months ago.

Having been rushed into hospital, Ferguson spent a few days in intensive care at Salford Royal Hospital. He subsequently remained an in-patient for a fortnight ahead of a return home in early June since when the Scot has continued his recovery in private.

“It has made me feel so humble, as have all the messages I have had from all over the world, wishing me the best,” said Ferguson, his gaze unwavering during the short film released on United’s official Twitter account.

“The good wishes do resonate very, very strongly with me. So thank you for that support you have given me. And lastly, I will be back later in the season to watch the team. In the meantime, all the best to Jose and the players. Thank you very much.”

Before his retirement in May 2013, Ferguson won 38 trophies during a 26-year spell in charge at Old Trafford, including 13 Premier League titles, two Champions Leagues, five FA Cups and four League Cups. During his earlier, more formative, years north of the border he led Aberdeen to 11 trophies.

His last public appearance before collapsing at home on May 5th was on April 29th at Old Trafford when he presented former Arsenal manager Arsène Wenger with a commemorative trophy to mark the departure of the Frenchman, a long-standing rival, from the north London club.

In a tweet announcing the video’s release, Manchester United said that: “since the football world was rocked by the news that Sir Alex Ferguson has undergone surgery for a brain haemorrhage, the most successful manager in football history has battled in a way only he knows how.”

Amid scores of relieved responses, Old Trafford stars past and present expressed their delight. The former United and England striker Wayne Rooney, tweeted: “Brilliant to see,” while Marcus Rashford, a member of Mourinho’s current squad, posted: “Looking well Sir Alex.” - Guardian service

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