Manchester: Former Manchester United boss Alex Ferguson has been inducted into the Premier League Hall of Fame, announced the club on Wednesday.
During his 27-year run with the club from 1986 to 2013, Ferguson clinched the Premier League 13 times, a record, which is also held by his old rival Arsene Wenger, the former Arsenal manager. He won the title thrice in a row on two separate occasions.
Ferguson's side won the inaugural Premier League title in 1992/93, giving the club its first league success since 1967. This win started a golden period for Manchester United, which ended in 2012/13 after Ferguson's final Premier League title win with the club. The legendary manager rebuilt the squad on numerous occasions and nurtured many players who went on to become legends.
Ferguson won 528 out of his 810 matches with the club. He was named as 'Manager of the Season' on 11 occasions and got the monthly award 27 times as well.
"I am truly delighted to be inducted into the Premier League Hall of Fame," said Sir Alex as quoted by the official website of the club.
"It is an honour when you receive recognition like this. However, it is not just about me as a person. It is about the job at Manchester United and the bond we had over many years, so I am also proud for the club, the staff and my players. My job was to send the fans home happy. United's history and my own expectations were the things that drove me, and I then had to try to develop all my players with the same expectations and make sure we could go out and achieve them."
"I feel Arsene is a very worthy inductee as he transformed Arsenal Football Club fantastically. They became a tough team to compete with and we both wanted to win, which motivated us further. Through the years since retirement, we would go for dinner together in a little restaurant he knows well in Switzerland. He is a really interesting man and I enjoy his company, but it is still my job to pick the wine!"
Wenger, who was also inducted into the Premier League Hall of Fame and had many memorable battles with the Reds, commented, "To share this with Sir Alex is a great honour for me. It's like two boxers, you fight like mad and go the distance together. At the end of the day, you have respect and it will be a great opportunity to meet with him, share a good bottle of wine and memories of our old battles."
Premier League chief executive Richard Masters said: "We are delighted to welcome our first two managers into the Premier League Hall of Fame. Sir Alex Ferguson and Arsene Wenger both made a remarkable contributions to the history of football in this country.
"They brought unparalleled levels of success to Manchester United and Arsenal respectively, raising standards and thrilling fans with a rivalry which resulted in an astonishing 16 title wins between them. The dominance of Manchester United under Sir Alex remains unmatched after he guided them to an incredible 13 titles across 21 Premier League seasons. To maintain that level of success for such a long period means he is quite rightly regarded as one of the greatest managers of all time."
An event will be held in May to honour the inductees. The inductees will receive a medallion featuring their name and year of induction along with a £10,000 donation made by the Premier League to a charity of their choice.
The Hall of Fame is the highest individual honour by the league. It "recognises and celebrates individuals who have an exceptional record of success and have made a significant contribution to the Premier League since its inception in 1992."
Six former Manchester United players have won this honour: Peter Schmeichel, Roy Keane, David Beckham, Paul Scholes, Eric Cantona and Wayne Rooney.