Manchester United will not do the quintuple, says Sir Alex Ferguson
Published 00:00 01/03/09 By By Simon Mullock
Sir Alex Ferguson says he does not have what it takes to eclipse his hero Jock Stein.
Celtic legend Stein is the only manager to complete a quadruple - his Lisbon Lions of 1967 lifting the European Cup at the end of a season which saw them crowned as Scottish champions and winners of the Scottish Cup and League Cup.
Forty-two years later, history beckons for Ferguson's Manchester United, with the newly crowned club world champions top of the Premier League, favourites to progress ahead of Inter Milan into the last eight of the Champions League and set to face Fulham in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup.
If United beat Tottenham in the Carling Cup Final today it will be the 41st trophy of a managerial career that saw Ferguson graduate to Old Trafford via East Stirling, St Mirren, Aberdeen - and a brief spell as Stein's assistant with Scotland..
But the United boss said: "Equalling Jock is not something that motivates me.
"You make your own history at Manchester United rather than emulate someone else.
"I don't think we can win everything anyway. In cup football you can lose a game quite easily with a deflected shot or something like that.
"We have a decent lead in the Premier League, a home tie against Inter Milan, and we play Tottenham in the Carling Cup Final.
"But it only takes a slip in this game and you are finished.
"I have never thought of equalling Jock's record. I had forgotten all about it - although I do remember now that he also won the Glasgow Cup in 1967 as well and there were some good teams playing in that. What Jock did was incredible. You think about it winning the European Cup with a 14-man squad all from within a 25-mile radius of Celtic Park.
"I was on the receiving end of a few defeats at that time. But I think Bill Shankly summed Jock Stein up best by saying he was immortal."
Ferguson has never forgotten the debt of gratitude he owes to Stein when he was cutting his managerial teeth.
Ferguson said: "Jock was a fantastic manager. I always remember asking him why he never criticised players and he gave me my most important piece of advice.
"Jock made a great point, he asked why should he penalise a player's family by criticising him in public?
"You may want to throttle a player but you don't need to tell the press about it.
"He said all you do is make enemies of their cousins, their uncles, their aunties, their mothers, their pals, their teacher and their milkmen. Why do it? You fall out with them all."
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