When Sir Alex Ferguson retired at the end of the 2013 season, he was the most successful football manager Britain had ever seen, having won twice as many trophies as his nearest rival. But that success had not come easily. Thirty-five years previously he had arrived at the rain-swept training ground at Aberdeen F.C. as the recently sacked manager of St Mirren; a hothead with a troublesome reputation and a lot to prove. Not for nothing, many thought he was a risky choice.
Fergie Rises returns to a time when Ferguson was lucky to get Aberdeen, not the other way around. Itâ??s the story of an eight-year revolution that saw the Dons and their ambitious young manager knock the Old Firm off their perch, taste victory in Europe for the first time, and electrify Scottish football. When Ferguson finally left the club for Manchester United, in 1986, fans and rivals were unanimous in believing he had engineered one of the most astonishing upheavals in the gameâ??s history.
Taking a view from inside the dug-out, and with the guidance of the giants of that Aberdeen team â?? including Willie Miller, Jim Leighton and Gordon Strachan â?? Michael Grant lays bare the full story of this remarkable but little known period of Fergusonâ??s career, revealing it as the crucible in which Britainâ??s greatest football manager was forged. Along the way he examines the personal tragedies Ferguson overcame â?? the deaths of his father and his mentor Jock Stein â?? and the rivalries, setbacks and triumphs that shaped a sporting genius.
'The glut of books on Alex Ferguson's Manchester United Revolution is exactly why this one is so interesting. A neat idea by an author whose account is superbly written.' Scotsman 'Best Scottish sports reads of 2014' 'This is a book that takes the evidence from a series of witnesses to burgeoning genius. The testimonies are stunning, insightful, sometimes bitter, mostly awed and regularly funny.' The Herald 'Having interviewed many of those under Fergie's Pittodrie stewardship, he brings much fresh insight into a period covered too briefly in his autobiography.' FourFourTwo 'The most fascinating part of Alex Ferguson's career is his eight years taking Aberdeen from no-hopers to beating Real Madrid in a European Final. All the greatest stories have a beginning and this is it.' Shortlist 'Thoughtful and informative.' -- Kevin McCarra The Times 'Excellent new tome.' -- Stephen McGowan Scottish Daily Mail 'A masterful re-telling of how Ferguson was "made" at Aberdeen.' -- Alan Pattullo Scotsman 'It is Grant's own passion that permeates and defines Fergie Rises and makes it the book that all of us would have loved to have written.' -- David Innes Aberdeen Voice 'Grant has painted a vivid tableau of a bygone age on a giant-sized canvas.' -- Neil Drysdale STV Aberdeen