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Sir Alex Ferguson enforced strict Cheltenham rule on Man Utd players and there were no exceptions

Sir Alex Ferguson enforced strict Cheltenham rule on Man Utd players and there were no exceptions

The former United boss took no prisoners.

Former Manchester United man Gary Pallister has revealed that Sir Alex Ferguson had very strict rules when it came to Cheltenham with players even getting dropped for attending the festival.

With the famous horse racing event taking place in March every year, it is understandable that Sir Alex had reservations about his star men getting involved due to the footballing season reaching its climax.

With United almost always competing for silverware during Ferguson's 26-year stint at Old Trafford, having players living it up at the racecourse in the week is hardly ideal preparation.

The former United manager is now a huge fan of horse racing and even has three of his own horses competing in this year's event.

Despite this Pallister has recounted what used to happen behind the scenes at United if Ferguson caught players at the festival.

“My favourite memories of Fergie and horse racing is that if he found out you’ve been to Cheltenham Festival, he'd drop you," Pallister told Cheltenham Racing.

“He wasn’t into Cheltenham racing then. He didn’t play golf and he didn’t like horse racing. Now he loves his golf and his horse racing and owns horses.

“Back in the day, he wasn't OK with the lads going off for a day at the races, but that’s all changed and he’s obviously been involved for quite a while now with his good friends from Manchester and had some good success there," The former United defender explained.

Sir Alex Ferguson- Getty
Sir Alex Ferguson- Getty

Pallister, who played for Manchester United for nine years between 1989 and 1998, went on to explain that Bryan Robson had a particular fondness for horse racing, while Paul Ince also enjoyed placing bets.

“Robbo was the biggest racing nut. I always remember we had the players pool at United back in the early days.

“He was the man because he knew a few of the jockeys and as I say he was England and United captain so he was going to get invited everywhere.

“Robbo, Incey was another one who liked a punt on the horses. I think they were the two main protagonists and they were always having a decent flutter on whatever the tipster got.”

Featured Image Credit: Getty

Topics: Manchester United, Sir Alex Ferguson, Horse Racing