I’ve been surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. Alex Ferguson managed Manchester United, arguably one of the biggest football clubs in the world, for almost 30 years. His view of management, especially people management, since he worked with multiple generations of footballers, is extremely insightful. I now have a better understanding of how and why teams play one way or the other.
Another reason I loved the book is that I remember the matches he talks about: I remember the 1999 Champions League final when they beat Bayern Munich in the last 3 minutes. I remember the 2009 and 2011 finals when they lost to maybe the best team that ever played football: Messi’s, Xavi’s and Iniesta’s Barcelona. And I remember the moment they lost the Premier League Championship to Manchester City in the 94th minute.
The book is straight to the point and Ferguson explains how he worked with his staff, how he managed the press, the leadership of the club. His age, as well, became an issue as time went by. Not for him, but for everyone around, from the press to the fans.
He talks about his relationship with Beckham, with Roy Keane, with Cristiano Ronaldo or with Rooney. He didn’t forget other managers, like Arsene Wenger from Arsenal, or Jose Mourinho from Chelsea (who, incidentally, is now at Manchester United).
Really, a great book that you should pick up if you have the time. If you are a football fan it’s even more recommended.