Legendary Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson joked he is glad to have retired sohe does not have to go up against Jurgen Klopp’s “phenomenal” Liverpool side.
United have yet to win the title sincethe Scotretiredin 2013, while Liverpoolended a three-decade wait to be crowned champions of Englandlast season by finishing top of the pile – 33 points better off than the Red Devils.
Liverpool also went all the way in the Champions League two seasons ago and, ahead of Sunday’s top-of-the-table showdown between the bitter rivals, Ferguson revealed he is a big admirer of Klopp’s work over the past few years.
“I’ve always considered the Manchester United and Liverpool derby the game of the season,” said Ferguson, speaking in aid of Sports United Against Dementia and the League Managers’ Association’s charity In The Game.
“Quite simply, they are the two most successful teams in Britain when you add up all the trophies they’ve won together.
“It’s obvious that you have to beat Liverpool to win anything. It’s similar to when I was at Aberdeen – you had to beat Rangers and Celtic to win anything and you can add a mental attitude to that.
“In reality, it is the game. Liverpool’s success over the 70s and 80s was phenomenal.
“To do that, I had to take a road that was always going tobe difficult, it meant I had to wait in terms of building the club. Eventually, it turned out fantastically for us.
“Now I’ve retired, and thank goodness I’ve retired actually when I see Liverpool’s performance over the last two seasons – they’ve been phenomenal. I’ve got great respect for Liverpool, I always have.”
Jordan Henderson wrote his name in Liverpool folklore by captaining the club to their first ever Premier League triumph, a year on from lifting the Champions League trophy.
Ferguson previously criticised Henderson for his running style, but the 79-year-old has now clarified his past comments and revealed United were close to signing the midfielder before he arrived at Anfield in 2011.
“We were ready to make a bid for him,” he said. “There was criticism from Brendan Rodgers about my assessment of Jordan.
“The actual story was we were ready to make a bid for him at Sunderland. I spoke to Steve Bruce. Our scouting and medical department said they weren’t happy with his running style.
“They said he could be the type to get injuries. I had to make sure players would always be available. But we loved Jordan as a player.
Source : goal.com