Salisbury JournalAnderson backs Fergie to carry on (From Salisbury Journal)

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Anderson backs Fergie to carry on

Salisbury Journal: Viv Anderson, pictured, believes Sir Alex Ferguson still has a strong desire to win trophies Viv Anderson, pictured, believes Sir Alex Ferguson still has a strong desire to win trophies

Viv Anderson has rejected any notion Sir Alex Ferguson might be tempted to call time on his extraordinary stint as Manchester United manager this summer, even if they win the Premier League and Champions League.

With United chief executive David Gill last week announcing that he will step away from the role he has held for almost 10 years at the end of the season, questions have been raised as to whether 71-year-old Ferguson will have the desire to go on.

But former United and England defender Anderson, who played under Ferguson from 1987-91, said: "There is no chance in a million years that Sir Alex will retire this summer. He loves the football club. He lives and breathes it. Only recently he said that he is good for another couple of years. He won't retire even if he wins those two trophies."

Ferguson spent part of this week in Barcelona, casting an eye over Real Madrid, who United face at Old Trafford next Tuesday in a mouthwatering Champions League last-16 second leg clash.

The fixture certainly overshadows Saturday's Premier League encounter with Norwich, even though United have a chance to re-open a 15-point lead on Manchester City, who are not in action until Monday evening.

In addition there is the prospect of Ryan Giggs making his 1,000th appearance in senior football.

However, the Welshman's presence may depend on how Ferguson intends to compensate for the likely absence of Phil Jones, who did such an effective job in a midfield holding role during the first leg in Madrid but subsequently injured his ankle in the FA Cup fifth-round win over Reading.

"Phil did very well against Marouane Fellaini recently as well, so it will be interesting to see if he overcomes his knock," said Anderson.

"But in the end, it will be about how Manchester United play on the night.

"They have vast experience and people like Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic will be telling the younger players what is expected of them."

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