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Sir Alex Ferguson donates memorabilia as university library named in his honour

The former Manchester United manager donated items to Glasgow Caledonian University as he opened the Sir Alex Ferguson Library on Wednesday.

Sir Alex Ferguson at the opening of the library at the university which has been renamed after the football legend (Peter Devlin/GCU/PA)
Sir Alex Ferguson at the opening of the library at the university which has been renamed after the football legend (Peter Devlin/GCU/PA)

By Douglas Barrie, PA Scotland

Sir Alex Ferguson has donated a selection of memorabilia to a Scottish university that has renamed its library after the football legend.

The former Manchester United manager visited Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU) on Wednesday to donate a number of personal items while officially opening the Sir Alex Ferguson Library.

Among the collection, which will be housed in a display called Sir Alex – My Story In Objects, are his A-licence coaching certificate from 1979 and a diary from 1993, the season he won his first Premier League title with the Old Trafford club.

The display in the library’s dedicated archive centre is open to students, staff and the general public.

Speaking at the university on Wednesday Sir Alex, who has also managed Aberdeen and Scotland, said: “It’s a fantastic honour for me coming back to Glasgow and Glasgow Caledonian University to be honoured with this library.

“Some of my life is over there and I hope you read it and learn something by it because if you look at me today and the success I’ve had it’s not always been success.

“That’s what I see over there with the young students I’ve supported and the challenges that have brought them to Glasgow Caledonian University.

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Memorabilia belonging to Sir Alex Ferguson at the renaming of the library (Douglas Barrie/PA)

“People look at the number of cup finals I won and leagues I won but I had failures.

“You know what I did?

“Every morning I got up. I accepted the challenge all the time.

“That’s what these young students I’ve supported are doing.

“As adults we have a responsibility to support the young people, give them an opportunity.

“Because when you do that they don’t let you down – they seize your opportunities.

“It’s a pleasure I’ve had being associated with Glasgow Caledonian University over the last few years that allowed me this fantastic library which I’m very proud of.”

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(from left clockwise) coaching notes from an Aberdeen training session, LMA manager of the year trophy, diary entry on the day he won his first Premier League, a worn Scottish League shirt (Peter Devlin/GCU/PA)

The 77-year-old has been a long-time supporter of the university and was a founding donor of the GCU Foundation, which he has given £700,000 to so far.

Other items included in the display are a worn Scottish league shirt, an early coaching notepad from his time managing Aberdeen, a certificate from his days in the Boys’ Brigade and a League Managers’ Association manager of the year trophy.

Principal and vice-chancellor Professor Pamela Gillies said: “The university’s library will be renamed the Sir Alex Ferguson Library in recognition of his outstanding generosity and contribution to nurturing the talent of our students at Glasgow Caledonian University.

“It is also in recognition of the fact that Sir Alex is a local hero who has achieved phenomenal influence as the world’s most successful football manager and as a truly exceptional, inspiring leader.”

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An A-licence coaching certificate and Sir Alex Ferguson’s World Cup security pass for Mexico 1986 (Peter Devlin/GCU/PA)

She added: “We felt the library, the heart of the university, would be the most appropriate building to rename.

“It contributes directly to the university’s key goals to equip students with the skills and knowledge they need to achieve academically, to maximise their employability and to contribute to our mission, for the common good.

“This aligns very closely to Sir Alex’s motivation for supporting our students, which was driven by his passion for providing young people with precious opportunities that will encourage them to reach their full potential and achieve their dreams.”

PA

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