He may have retired from football management but Sir Alex Ferguson still has an eye for an expensive transfer. The Ideal Wine Company learned this week that Sir Alex is planning to auction off his wine collection for around £3 million pounds.
In the past Sir Alex was known for enjoying an after match glass or two with opposing managers. Alex liked to savour a victory over a nice vintage red, or talk tactics with a vanquished foe. It would be cheeky to suggest he’d a glass too many when he chose David Moyes as his successor at Manchester United.
A vintage French with lots of bottle (not Eric Cantona)
Sir Alex has around 5,000 bottles which are to be auctioned off by Christies in Hong Kong. The cellar consists mainly of Domaine de la Romanee-Conti, a French Burgundy which is much in vogue at the moment.
The wine is being sold in Hong Kong as there is a large market for this type of vintage French wine, even not including the ‘Alex Ferguson/Manchester United’ connections this would still be a major auction.
Champions League vintage
Ferguson who won the Champions League as United Manager in 1999 claims that 1999 wasn’t just a vintage year for football but for wine too. He waxes lyrical about the Romanee-Conti ’99 which he claims is a very special year.
Ferguson also liked to swap wine with other like-minded football managers, it’s not clear if the cellar includes ant bottles donated by old foes like Jose Mourinho, Arsene Wenger or Rafa Benitez.
The French bottle
Sir Alex had a few French players in his time who may have introduced him to the wine of their home country, most famous of all was the French superstar Eric Cantona who helped with United’s rise for glory back in the 1990s.
The Frenchman, signed from arch rivals Leeds United was an often spiky character both on and off the field. Cantona is now more famous for his acting and work in adverts (often selling beer). Sir Alex has as keen an eye for a French player as he does for French vintage.
An interest outside of the game
Sir Alex claims that his enthusiasm for wine has helped him keep an interest outside of football. This has helped to keep him less stressed and more relaxed and focussed.
You don’t need to be a high profile football manager to keep an interest in quality wine, but like Sir Alex, developing an enthusiasm away from your 9-5 job can be healthy and some wines can also be a good investment. If you’re interested in building up a good wine cellar please contact the Ideal Wine Company, we’re happy to chat to anyone (even David Moyes).