Tuesday, September 6, 2011

'Maldini Thought I Was Crazy' - Manchester United's Sir Alex Ferguson Reveals Approach For AC Milan Legend..

A move for the Italy great was instantly rejected, while Inter's Sneijder is not the right man to replace Paul Scholes as Jose Mourinho finds an ally who has come to his defence.

Manchester United coach Sir Alex Ferguson admits he tried to mastermind a move for AC Milan legend Paolo Maldini, but reveals he failed in his attempt to land the Italy great.

Ferguson made no secret of his admiration for the former defender, who spent his entire career at San Siro before hanging up his boots in 2009.

The coach said he was eager to see Maldini's feet hit the ground at Old Trafford, but the player's father Cesare put a stop to any subsequent move.

"I made a question to Maldini's father and he looked at me as if I was crazy. He said 'what??' That was enough for me to understand it was a no," Ferguson told Il Corriere dello Sport in a video interview.

Another Italy-based player who was heavily linked with a summer departure to Manchester is Inter's Wesley Sneijder.

But Ferguson suggested the 27-year-old Netherlands international was not required despite being tipped as a replacement for Paul Scholes.

Sneijder said he was made aware of an interest from England, but the move fizzled out.

"Sneijder is not the ideal replacement for Scholes. He is a fantastic player, but not what we were looking for. Only [Barcelona's] Xavi and Iniesta can be compared to Scholes," said the coach.

And he explained why the Englishman, and Welshman Ryan Giggs, always sought to demonstrate their loyalty over the years.

"Giggs and Scholes were with me since they were 13 years of age," Ferguson said.

"They were young boys; they kept their feet on the ground and were very humble.

"They are an excellent example for young players."

Jose Mourinho has come under a storm of criticism for his recent actions against Barcelona in the Supercopa brawl last month.

But the former Chelsea and Inter coach has found an ally in Ferguson, who defended his ways of reaching stupendous goals with Real Madrid.

"The thing about the enthusiasm with coaches like Mourinho, I don't think there is anything wrong with that," said Ferguson.

"I was like that when I was young. When I was young I was always out there all the time.

"That is the way Mourinho is, that is his nature. Some coaches sit there and take notes, but I can never do that. I don't do that.

"I rely on my brain to remember things. If you think about when Porto scored against Manchester United at Old Trafford...Mourinho started running like a madman. I thought to myself, 'I used to do that myself'.

"At the time you can be angry about it, but there is nothing wrong with enthusiasm.

"You dont want to embarrass yourself. People recognise the enthusiasm and supporters know the coach is fighting for them."

On his ties with United over the years, the coach said he had never any reason to consider his tenure there.

"There was no way I was ever thinking of leaving Manchester United. Everything was there for me.

"The challenge I needed was there and also the expectation means you never have an easy day. Every day is thrown with a challenge."

United play Bolton Wanderers on Saturday evening.

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