David Moyes to be sacked: Could Sir Alex Ferguson return as next Manchester United manager?

The departure of Moyes appears imminent but will it herald the return of his predecessor?

Manchester United have run out of patience with David Moyes and the former Everton manager looks set to be told he no longer has a job at Old Trafford before the season is out.

Attention has quickly turned to who will replace the Scot when he goes, with one particular name likely to excite Manchester United fans more than any other - that of his predecessor - Sir Alex Ferguson.

The most successful manager in British football called time on his spell in charge at Old Trafford last summer after 26 years at the club. During that time he won 13 Premier League titles, five FA Cups, four League Cups and two Champions League trophies.

Read more: Who will be the next United manager?
The damning statistics that tell the tale of Moyes' woe
How Moyes paid for failure in the transfer market

So could he return?

Bizarrely, it would not be an unprecedented move at Manchester United.

Sir Matt Busby, the only other manager to deliver the European Cup to Old Trafford, also returned for a second stint after his successor failed to follow in his footsteps.

Sir Matt Busby Sir Matt Busby  

Busby stood down after winning five league titles and two FA Cups, as well as that European Cup won at Wembley in 1968. Wilf McGuinness was promoted from reserve team manager to replace him but lasted just 18 months. His sacking saw Busby return for a six month spell to see out the 1970/71 season.

In another coincidence, just like Ferguson, Busby became a director at Manchester United following his managerial retirement.

 

While Ferguson has been a regular at United's games this season, following his retirement he was unequivocal about not returning to the dugout.

"I'm not interested in managing again or getting myself worked up about Manchester United's results," he said in October last year.

"United are in good hands with David Moyes. He will be fine. He's a good manager.

"You would be throwing your money down the drain if you put any money on me coming back as a manager.

"I made my decision. The timing was perfect. There is no way back for me now. I've got a new life.

"I want to go the Kentucky Derby and the US Masters, the Melbourne Cup. I want to visit vineyards in Tuscany and France."

As well as all those things, it was recently announced that the 72-year-old was taking up a 'long-term teaching position' at Harvard, starting next month.

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