Man Utd icon Sir Alex Ferguson speaks out on wife’s death after 57-year marriage

Sir Alex Ferguson has thanked Manchester United for the ‘wonderful tribute’ they held for his late wife after she passed away at the age of 84. Lady Cathy Ferguson, who was married to the iconic Manchester United manager for almost 60 years, died earlier this month.

United paid tribute to Lady Cathy with both men’s and women’s teams wearing black armbands for matches against Brentford and Arsenal respectively. Flags at Old Trafford were also lowered to half-mast to honour the legendary former United manager’s wife.

Sir Bobby Charlton was also honoured recently by United following his death last week and the iconic football star will be celebrated on Sunday before the Manchester derby. Charlton and Ferguson both had a strong connection off the pitch that dated back to when the Scot first applied for the job at United.

And Ferguson wrote a beautiful eulogy in United’s match-day programme on Sunday paying tribute to the man who helped give him the managerial position at United. He wrote: “The personal connection between us began almost three decades later, when I was manager of Aberdeen, and Bobby was a director of Manchester United when they were looking for a new manager.

“The directors came to meet me in Glasgow and asked what my vision was for the job. I said I would take the same approach I had at Aberdeen, by looking to build up the whole club, not just the team, and that I would do that by developing young players. As I was explaining this, I saw Bobby nudge one of the other directors and he said ‘that’s what we want’. He’d made his mind up. From that moment on he was a tower of strength for me.

Ferguson added: “It’s no surprise to me that we’ve seen tributes to Sir Bobby from everywhere in the world, on every TV channel and in every newspaper, because he was without question the greatest English player of all time. People loved him because of all those thunderbolt goals but it was more than that.

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“My dad used to say that humility in success is a sign of greatness, and that was Bobby. He never used to boast about his own achievements; it was always about the team and the club.” Ferguson also thanked the club for the respect they had shown following the death of his wife.

He added: “Unfortunately, I have also suffered the painful loss of my beloved wife, Cathy, this month, and I want to thank the club, the fans, and everyone who has sent me their condolences. The black armbands worn by the team against Brentford, and the flags at half-mast around Old Trafford were a wonderful tribute. Cathy supported me every step of the way through my career, and she was the backbone of our family.

“At such a sad time, there is tremendous comfort to be found in being part of the Manchester United community and we’ve all felt that spirit this week. We’re continuing to mourn for Bobby’s loss, but as we look forward to the derby this afternoon, let’s also celebrate the many wonderful memories he has blessed us with and be inspired by the example he set.”

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