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Man Utd star asked Sir Alex Ferguson for a year off with pay after winning Treble, his reaction was priceless

Ryan Smart

| Last updated 

Man Utd star asked Sir Alex Ferguson for a year off with pay after winning Treble, his reaction was priceless

Manchester City could secure a treble this season - but it is unlikely that, if successful, any player will repeat a request made by one former Manchester United star after their treble-winning campaign.

City are still in contention to win the Champions League and FA Cup, as well as a third consecutive Premier League title.

They take on Real Madrid in the second leg of their European semi-final at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday evening, and will wrap up the Premier League crown with a victory over Chelsea this weekend.

Should they progress past Real tonight, City will then face Inter Milan in the Champions League final in Istanbul on June 10.


The week prior, they take on fierce rivals United, themselves looking for a domestic cup double, in the FA Cup final.

The two clubs have never met in the final of a senior competition, adding extra intrigue to the Wembley showdown.

United are the only team in English football to complete a treble, and City could go one step closer to becoming the second if they succeed at Wembley - providing they defeat Real, of course.



Pep Guardiola is looking to do the traditional treble for the second time as a manager, having done so with Barcelona in 2008/09. Looking ahead, he will hope to keep the City squad together this summer ahead of a renewed assault next season.

And he probably wouldn't expect one of his stars to ask for a year off if they achieve the treble - like former United star Dwight Yorke did in 1999.

Dwight Yorke recalls Sir Alex Ferguson offer

Speaking on United's official podcast, the Trinidad and Tobago international - who scored 29 goals in all competitions in the treble season - recalled how he approached manager Sir Alex Ferguson with the unusual offer after the campaign had ended.


Although he admitted the offer was presented 'jokingly', Yorke did say that he asked for a year's sabbatical - with pay.

He explained: "I mean, what else would you do? I went in and I said, 'Gaffer, what are we doing?' Obviously, after you win the treble, there's nothing else to do.

"[I asked] 'Can I have a year off from football, with pay, and then I come back the next year and rejoin the team?'

"Honestly, I don't know what made me think that. I just thought, 'What else is there to do? There's nothing else to do. What more can we possibly do as a team?' Yeah, you can repeat the feat, but if you don't repeat it, you are deemed as a failure."


Ferguson's reaction to the request was exactly as you would expect.

"That was a fun moment. If ever in time you were going to ask the gaffer for anything, that was the time to go in and ask him.

"I didn't have anything to lose. He could tell me to f*** off - which is what he did. It was kind of jokingly, but if he had said to me, 'take a year off', I would have taken it.

"But I knew that wasn't going to happen, I just thought, 'You know what, it's worth a try'."

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Manchester United, Sir Alex Ferguson, Pep Guardiola, Manchester City, Premier League, Champions League

Ryan Smart
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