Is It Time For Sir Alex Ferguson To Resign?

Mark Cohen by Mark Cohen / 06 January 2012, 10:33

Manchester United's second straight league defeat has rather predictably caused critics to voice that Sir Alex Ferguson is running out of time at the club. With United tumbling out of the Champions League in the group stages, embarrassed at home in the Carling Cup to Championship side Crystal Palace and now losing ground in the title race to fierce rivals Man City, there have been several loud suggestions that Fergie is losing his magic. The question is, when will he finally retire and who could possibly make the step up and succeed him?

United suffered an against-the-odds home defeat to basement club Blackburn Rovers on New Year's Eve and then just four days later they were comprehensively beaten 3-0 by an inspired Newcastle side at the Sports Direct Arena. Two defeats in a row is certainly not a crisis but history tells us that it doesn't happen often at the club and has therefore got the alarm bells ringing. Of course United are by no means out of the title race but traditionally this is the period in which they begin to hit form. Fergie has far too much experience to panic but he will be worried about his rapidly growing injury list. United's injury hit squad has recently forced Fergie to employ Michael Carrick at centre-back and Antionio Valencia at right-back. The fans are crying out for some new signings this January - most notably a creative midfield player who can fill the void that Paul Scholes left - but with Fergie usually saving his transfer business until the summer it will be interesting to see if he decides to splash out and bring in a blockbuster name.

Last week Fergie stated that he was ready for another three more years at the club, providing he remained healthy. He may have reached the grand old age of 70 but it is clear that he still has the hunger for success. In the When Will Alex Ferguson Retire? betting market he is priced at 5/1 with Stan James to step down this year, 10/3 in 2013, 6/5 in 2014 and 9/4 in 2015 or after.

Roy Keane was long thought of has an ideal replacement but his decision to quit Sunderland back combined with his disappointing stint in charge of Ipswich have severely hampered his chances. At the moment the Next Man Utd Manager Betting indicates that Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho is the favourite to succeed Ferguson. The charismatic Special One has not been shy in revealing that he would love to return to England and is a manager who is admired by Ferguson. Barcelona boss Pep Guardiola may fancy a new challenge or if Martin O'Neill is successful at Sunderland he may be considered the man to step up to the plate.

Odds courtesy of Stan James.

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