"Just because a footballer has enjoyed a successful playing career with Manchester United, doesn't mean that he will make it in the field of management."
These were the wise words of Manchester United boss, Sir Alex Ferguson, today after his side's 1-0 thrashing of Sunderland, themselves managerless since ex-United favourite Roy Keane resigned at the Stadium of Light on Thursday.
Sir Alex was telling Sunderland stand-in Ricky Sbragia yesterday, that most of the United players that played under him and have since gone on to manage clubs, have been failures.
According to Sbragia, Ferguson told him:
"Some of these guys think it'll be easy stepping up from player to manager, but Gordon Strachan, Stevie Bruce, Mark Hughes, and now, Keano have all made a mess of it. Then there's Incey at Blackburn.
"The worst one was Robbo! What a load of shite!"
Bryan Robson, known as Captain Marvel, finished playing with Middlesbrough in 1996, and then went on to manage the club. After he left the Riverside 'under a cloud' in 2001, 'Robbo' joined Bradford City, then West Bromwich Albion and, finally, Sheffield United, before giving it all up as a bad job.
The worst ever player who was associated with Manchester United, and then went on to manage, was Steve McClaren. He 'succeeded', if you will, Robson at 'Boro, then took over from Sven Goran Eriksson as England boss - a calamitous reign which culminated in England being dumped out of Euro 2008 at the qualifying stage.
McClaren, and most of the other former United players-turned-managers, graduated from the Manchester United Management Academy (see above for emblem). The Academy takes players approaching retirement, and 'trains' them to be managers.