Victim of a brain hemorrhage in May 2018, former Manchester United coach Alex Ferguson had to undergo emergency surgery and undergo a long period of rehabilitation. He explains that more than anything, it is the fact of forgetting his memories that he feared.
It was three years ago. In May 2018, Alex Ferguson was placed in an induced coma after suffering a sudden brain hemorrhage. At the time, doctors gave the legendary Scottish manager a 20% chance of survival. But more than death, it was the silence that “Sir Alex” feared. The silence and forgetting of his own memories. A “terrifying” fear, he confides this week in a long interview with the Guardian.
“It was a huge worry for me,” said the former Manchester United manager, now 79. It happened after the operation when I lost my voice. It was the scariest part. I knew I was alive but, all by myself, I started to think to myself: ‘I wonder if they are telling me the truth?’ The operation was a success but you are in this loneliness. It can be scary. When I lost my voice I was like, ‘They never told me this could happen.’ “
“I didn’t get a glass of wine for nine months”
And Ferguson to recount his first reaction to waking up, holding his head in his hands: “I hope my memory is not affected. I really hope I haven’t forgotten anything.”
After ten days without being able to speak, the coach was however quickly reassured. “The speech therapist came every day and she was phenomenal, he greets. She asked me to write down all the names of my family and my players. Then she started with the animals, the fish and the birds to see if I could remember the names. Little by little my voice came back. But the most important thing was that my memory was good. She made me write letters. I wrote a letter to Cathy (her woman), it was scribbling. “
Since then, the former Old Trafford star has regained all of his faculties, and has started to roam the football stadiums again. But he does not forget another point of this painful episode: “I did not get a glass of wine for nine months, he sighs. And that was hard.”