At first the soccer world was in shock when, after 26 years, news sources reported Wednesday that Sir Alex Ferguson would be stepping down from the helm at Manchester United.
“I think everybody’s sad,” Red Bulls forward Thierry Henry said after Wednesday’s 2-1 win over the Montreal Impact. “Everybody is sad for the game. What a boss. What a legend. What he did for the game. I have no word to describe what Sir Alex has done for the game. It’s just mind blowing.”
But that shock quickly wore off, replaced instead by praise, support, and memories in respect for the 71-year-old Scot who claimed 38 trophies, including 13 league titles, two Champions League wins, five FA Cups and four League Cups.
“What I always remember is when he came along and he said he wants to pass Liverpool,” Henry said following New York’s 2-1 win over Montreal. “To say it before, that he did it – you know, it’s not like doing it and then he said ‘Oh that’s what I had in the back of my mind’ – he said it before. He said my aim is to pass Liverpool. And he did. So you have to give him his credit, what he did at that club. No word to describe what the guy did. Just outstanding career. Sir Alex, legend.”
Early Wednesday morning, before the Red Bulls’ training session, players took to Twitter to express their praise for Sir Alex Ferguson:
Sad day for football.The Great Man RETIRES. One of the GREATEST managers ever.SAF is 1 of the most infuential people that I have met #KING— Tim Cahill (@Tim_Cahill) May 8, 2013
Sad day seeing Sir Alex Ferguson step down as manager. Class in everything aspect of the game #legendsneverdie— Ian Christianson (@iChristianson6) May 8, 2013
Sir Alex, you my friend, are a true legend.— Heath Pearce (@HeathGPearce) May 8, 2013
Hoy se retira una leyenda del futbol. Unos de los mejores entrenadores jamas visto. Sir Alex El maestro. #manutd— ruben bover (@ruben_bover) May 8, 2013
Damn. #thankyouSirAlex— Dax McCarty (@DaxMcCarty11) May 8, 2013