Recipe for success

01 March 2009 02:42
Sir Alex Ferguson's unabated hunger for silverware is the reason Manchester United are chasing titles on several fronts, according to Lee Sharpe. Ferguson spotted Sharpe's potential early on, plucked him from the ranks of Torquay in 1988 and subsequently had little hesitation in throwing the midfielder into his first-team. Sharpe went on to win three League titles as well as the FA Cup, League Cup and Cup Winners Cup with United and he told Goals on Sunday that it would come as no surprise to him if Sir Alex had a few titles left in him yet. "The dominance the side has now and they way they keep winning things is phenomenal," said Sharpe. "The manager walks in on the first day of pre-season and that's what he asks everyone: 'are you up for it, it's a different challenge now; I want to win things, anyone who doesn't feel the same passion as me can walk out now. "I didn't see anyone walk out in the eight years I was there and I'm sure they are still not." Sink or swimBeating Crystal Palace in the 1990 FA Cup final replay was a highlight of Sharpe's career, as was scoring a hat-trick in a 6-2 League Cup victory over Arsenal at Highbury in the same year. Sharpe's success helped justify that early faith that Ferguson showed in him. "He threw me straight in," he recalled. "I didn't have a long time to get used to the place and the people - I was thrown into the side after only a couple of weeks of the season at left-back so it was a little bit of an easier position than playing wide left. "All the game was in front of me and I had people around to help me; it was sink or swim. I think he knew that because I had pace I could get myself out of trouble and I just had to learn as I went on. "Funnily enough I didn't play that well that night I scored a hat-trick at Highbury; I think I only touched the ball half-a-dozen times and three of them hit the back of the net. "That whole year was probably a special season for me and probably my most enjoyable." More success followed in 1993 when United secured their first league title since 1967 and Sharpe still remembers the riotous celebrations clearly - with good reason. "At the time we won the league without really doing anything because Villa had slipped up at home," he said. "I can't get through to any of the lads because they are on the phone so I thought I would pop down to Old Trafford because they'd be something going on. "Within minutes there were thousands lifting me up and throwing me into the air and there was a bit of a danger so I had to sneak into the ground and sneak away."

Source: SKY_Sports