When Sir Alex Ferguson finally retired from club football at the helm of Manchester United, much time was spent relishing his iconic tenure with the club. However, the sights were quickly rapt on who would be the gaffer’s successor at Old Trafford.
A host of talented names were in the running, or would have been made available given the momentous nature of the task. Due to that, it came as a bit of a shocker when David Moyes was named the successor by Ferguson himself.
This handpicked choice baffled many, and the disaster it spiraled into is something no Red Devil wishes to recall. However, it may have affected one man in an even deeper manner.
In his book “Prepare to Lose: the Mourinho Era”, Spanish journalist Diego Torres reveals that choosing Moyes over Jose Mourinho caused a big divide in the relationship between Ferguson and the Portuguese gaffer.
Torres writes: “Mourinho thought that Ferguson was, besides his ally, also his friend and godfather. He was convinced that they were tied by a relationship of genuine trust. He thought that his fabulous collection of titles constituted an ‘endorsement’ unreachable to any other contenders.”
The book goes into even more detail, particularly regarding the uncertainty that Mourinho himself was experiencing at Real Madrid.
Torres adds: “When he knew that Ferguson had chosen Moyes, the Everton coach, he was struck by a terrible disbelief. These were the most unfortunate hours of Mourinho’s phase as Real Madrid coach.
“He endured them between dozing and waking, glued to his mobile phone in search of clarifications, on the night of the 7th and the morning of the 8th of May, tucked into the Sheraton Mirasierra hotel.”
Torres adds that SAF didn’t even call Mourinho to explain the Moyes choice, and that allegedly affected the current Red Devils’ boss even more badly.