Alex Ferguson's 'sad' autobiography torn to shreds by Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers
A work of friction: Rodgers sounded a warning over Fergie's book
Views Manchester United managerial legend expresses in new book could taint his legacy warns Anfield counterpart
Brendan Rodgers has warned Sir Alex Ferguson’s bitter autobiography bombshells could backfire spectacularly... and destroy the Scot's own legacy.
Liverpool manager Rodgers said he was “saddened” by the vicious attack on the Anfield club, and its players, which is a strong, running theme throughout Manchester United legend Fergie’s new book.
Rodgers insisted he must defend Kop stars such as Steven Gerrard and Jordan Henderson, who he claims were unfairly maligned, and delivered a series of cutting ripostes, when he:
Accused Ferguson of trying to bring Liverpool down because he resented chasing them for so many years.
Called the attack on Gerrard ‘incredible’ - and claimed Fergie is the only man in football who doesn’t think the Liverpool and England captain is a top player.
Suggested former Old Trafford boss Ferguson owes Henderson an apology for trying to ‘damage his career’.
Slammed the Scot for ‘inappropriate’ comments that breach etiquette in terms of talking about other clubs’ players.
Hoped his own players don’t feel they can’t say anything privately in the dressing room for fear the manager will later repeat it.
Dismissed claims he is too young at to manage a club such as Liverpool after being appointed at age 39, pointing out Fergie was only a few years older, at 45, when he took over at Old Trafford.
Rodgers even humorously suggested that if Ferguson is right about this Liverpool side being eight players away from winning the title, then United, trailing eighth in the Premier League, must need even more.
But his humour could not disguise a forensic and damning dissection of Ferguson’s comments, when he suggested such a bitter outburst threatens to undermine the legendary manager’s hard-earned legacy.
As lengthy queues formed to buy the book on its release, Rodgers said: “I think there is a sadness to it, as this is something that will probably stay with people for a long while.
“I think every football person would have enjoyed seeing him going out and leaving the legacy he had done. But now people are only going to talk about his comments in the book.”
Rodgers was less courteous over Ferguson’s attacks on Gerrard - who the Scot claimed was “not a top, top player”, and Henderson - who Fergie bizarrely suggested ran in too upright a manner, which would lead to injury problems.
The Kop boss said: “It was a breach of etiquette, and it surprised me, coming from someone with such a status in the game. As someone who has worked with young players he must understand the impact his words can have.
“Jordan is an incredible athlete, and for a young player making his way in the game, those comments could be damaging. I would hope that if Ferguson bumps into Jordan, he would apologise for that.
“As for Steven, it’s not credible really, he must be the only one in football who doesn’t think he’s a top, top player.”
Rodgers insists he is proud of the history and dignity of Liverpool as a club.
He hinted that bitterness built up over the years when the Anfield side dominated English football may be behind a lot of the sour grapes.
“When you have been a successful club like Liverpool, chasing them for so many years, you have to find ways of bringing them down. But this is a club that has class, a club that has history,” he added.
Rodgers had one last response to Ferguson’s jibes, when asked about the claim he is eight players away from winning the title:
“Eight? Well at least that’s probably two less than they need to win the league then....!”