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United legend Gregg says Fergie can make it 20

Harry tips Sir Alex to win title again

By Steven Beacom

Harry Gregg has backed Manchester United and Sir Alex Ferguson to bounce back and become winners again after losing the Premier League title to Manchester City.

Roberto Mancini's side are still celebrating after their stunning success on Sunday at the Etihad Stadium when Sergio Aguero scored that incredible injury time winner against QPR to take the crown away from their fierce derby rivals, who were about to savour a 20th league triumph following their 1-0 victory at Sunderland.

Ever since the Argentine hit the net, there has been a seemingly neverending stream of predictions that City, with their squad and spending power, will dominate the English game for years to come, just the way United have done.

City boss Roberto Mancini got in on the act on Tuesday by declaring his team are now ready to take on the might of Barcelona and Real Madrid in Europe.

Ahead of his testimonial match at Windsor Park on Tuesday night, United legend Gregg laughed during a press conference at those who say it is the end of an era for his old club.

“End of an era? Are you kidding?” asked Gregg.

“After what United have accomplished over the years, after the time of the accident (Munich air crash) when they came back and other times throughout the years when they kept coming back and now people say it's the end of an era because of what happened on Sunday.

“United have been written off many times under Sir Alex Ferguson. They always come back and they will do so again.”

Gregg says they “broke the mould” when they made his first manager at Old Trafford, the late, great Sir Matt Busby. If there is one man who Harry puts in the same bracket, it is the current United boss.

Gregg feels that until Ferguson took over at the Theatre of Dreams in 1986, the Red Devils were on a serious downward spiral.

Gregg said: “Along came this fellow from Scotland and he rescued what I considered to be an institution.

“What Alex Ferguson has done, what he has won and what he stands for doesn't need me to talk about.

“He is what Man United is all about. That is the finest compliment I can pay Sir Alex Ferguson,” he added.

On suggestions that Ferguson might step down, Gregg stated: “Anybody who thinks he is going to jack it in now want their heads tested.

“He lost the league to Manchester City and I know he will not have been happy about that but he'll be more determined than ever now.

“At the weekend City in fairness to them did what United have been doing to other teams for years and credit to City for that and their title win, but they will face a strong challenge from Sir Alex and his side next season,” he said.

Before, during and after Tuesday night's testimonial Gregg cut an emotional figure.

He did not try to hide it, saying: “It was a very, very emotional evening for me. When I played the game I was lucky enough to play for the great Manchester United.

“I find it frightening that after all these years they have come across to take part in this game.

“I didn't ask for this match — it was the Carryduff Manchester United Supporters Club who organised this.

“I am very humbled by this and feel very proud that this match has gone ahead.

“Manchester United mean a lot to me — it was a great part of my life and still is and that's why I feel very emotional that they brought such a good side over to play an Irish League select team.

“I really am very moved that they have remembered an old carpenter like me,” added Gregg.

Anyone with any sense of United's history will never forget what Harry Gregg did on the pitch as the bravest of goalkeepers or off it when he saved several lives with his selfless and heroic actions after the Munich air crash.

Gregg of course likes to play down his part in United's remarkable success story.

He says: “The Busby Babes were the beginning of what's happening now.

“I think I played a very small part in what was the beginning of greatness.”

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