Ferguson cuts down on paper work

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The Independent Online

Sir Alex Ferguson has no immediate plans to recruit an assistant, although there will be some changes, with the Manchester United manager passing over a lot of administrative chores which make him "depressed" when confronted by a huge pile of paper each morning.

Ferguson outlined his plans yesterday at a press conference to announce his £11m, three-year-deal to stay on at Old Trafford. There had been rumours he could link up again with Steve McClaren, or the former United midfielder, Bryan Robson, but Ferguson said his first aim was to ensure the continued stability of the youth set-up.

The 60-year-old Ferguson admitted he had performed "a huge U-turn" in deciding not to retire. "The club becomes ingrained in the fabric of your life," he said. "There is the personal relationship you have with people you work with, supporters come to watch you train. It becomes personal.

"It is a very difficult club to leave, as I have found out. The U-turn only came about because of the intervention of my wife, Cathy, and sons, but I couldn't see myself riding into the sunset, not just yet.

"As Cathy says, retire when you're tired, and I feel strong, young and fit. Hopefully my health will be maintained and I can go on, because I do think we can get better."