Ten players who have crossed swords with Fergie and what happened to them afterwards.
1) David Beckham
Becks experienced Fergie's wrath following a 2-0 FA Cup defeat to Arsenal at Old Trafford in February 2003. Legend has it that the United boss told Beckham after the game that Ashley Cole had made him look "a right Charlie" (or words to that effect), only for Becks to retort "not as big a one as Wenger made you look". In fury, Fergie kicked out at a stray boot, which hit Beckham above the eye and left him needing stitches. Fergie later fessed up to the incident, insisting "It was a complete accident".
What happened next? Beckham left the club to join Real Madrid six months later.
2) Paul Ince
The self-styled Guv'nor always had a fractious relationship with the real boss of Old Trafford, and things got even worse following a 4-0 defeat at Barcelona in November 1994. "You're a bottler, Incey. You cannae handle the stage, can you?" Fergie reportedly taunted the midfielder in the Nou Camp dressing room. The United manager hustled Ince out of Old Trafford and was later recorded branding him as "a f***ing big-time Charlie" in a dressing-room documentary.
What happened next? Ince was sold to Inter Milan in the summer of 1995.
3) Lee Sharpe
Fergie was left fuming during the title run-in of 1992 when he discovered that United prodigies Lee Sharpe and Ryan Giggs had been seen out on the town in Blackpool after a crucial defeat to Nottingham Forest. The United boss headed straight for Sharpe's house to confront him, only to find a party in full swing. Fergie promptly flung everyone out of the front door with the words "Go on, go home. This is no f***ing party house" before ripping Sharpe to shreds.
What happened next? Sharpe survived this time, but it signalled the beginning of the end of his relationship with Ferguson and he left for Leeds in 1996.
4) Ruud van Nistelrooy
The Dutchman fell out with Fergie after he was left on the bench for the League Cup final in 2006. Their relationship finally imploded after Van Nistelrooy was dropped for the last Premier League match of the season and stormed out of the stadium three hours before kick-off. It was later reported that RVN had been dropped for the final after a training ground fight with Cristiano Ronaldo, during which the Dutch striker had taunted the winger with the words "Go crying to your daddy", a reference to United coach Carlos Quieroz.
What happened next? Van Nistelrooy was promptly flogged to Real Madrid.
5) Roy Keane
Keano had long been Fergie's manager on the pitch, but that didn't stop the two having a stormy relationship. Matters came to a head in 2005, when the Irishman criticised a training camp in Portugal, before lashing out at team-mate Rio Ferdinand in an infamous rant on MUTV, declaring, "Just because you earn £120,000 a week and play well for 20 minutes against Tottenham, you think you're a superstar". Keane was stripped of the captain's armband and dropped for a reserve game.
What happened next? Keane left United immediately, before joining Celtic.
6) Paul McGrath
Ferguson had pledged to rid United of its booze culture when he took over as manager at Old Trafford in 1986. The Irishman had been one of the ringleaders, but his cultured performances on the pitch had spared him the axe. Until, that is, both he and Norman Whiteside appeared drunk in a TV interview before an FA Cup tie in 1989. Ferguson soon gave both miscreants their marching orders.
What happened next? McGrath was sold to Aston Villa for a bargain £450,000, going on to play the best football of his career and earning the PFA Player of the Year award in 1993.
7) Gordon Strachan
The two outspoken Scots had enjoyed success together at Aberdeen, but that counted for nothing when Ferguson became the midfielder's boss at Old Trafford in 1986. "The screaming and shouting did not cease," Strachan later recalled. "It just got worse and more personal." Following one poor performance against Nottingham Forest, Ferguson told the media, "Strachan, to me, was like a triallist who had found himself completely out of his depth. He seemed to be intimidated by Stuart Pearce."
What happened next? Ferguson knocked on Strachan's door the next day to tell him he was being sold to Leeds.
8) Jaap Stam
The Dutch defender was bombed out of Old Trafford in August 2001 after a dressing-room showdown following a poor performance in a 3-2 win over Fulham on the opening weekend of the season. Fergie let rip at Stam after the game, and the Dutchman responded with both barrels. Their relationship had already been shattered by damaging revelations made by Stam in his autobiography, but the incident marked the end of the his career at United.
What happened next? Stam was transferred to Lazio.
9) Peter Schmeichel
Fergie once sacked the imperious Danish keeper after conceding three goals at Anfield in 1994. The United boss criticised Schmeichel for his distribution after the match, but the Dane wasn't having any of it. "We ended up having a massive, massive row. The next day, I was called into his office and he said, 'Listen, I have to sack you. I can't tolerate my players speaking to me like that. It goes against my authority.'"
What happened next? Schmeichel apologised to Ferguson and his team-mates, and went on to win four more Premier League titles and the Champions League in 1999.
10) Norman WhitesideThe Belfast midfielder is another United legend who regularly received a tongue-lashing from Fergie over his boozing. On one occasion during a club trip to Bahrain, Whiteside and team-mate Bryan Robson were forced to walk the three miles back to the hotel after being discovered on the lash in the bar by Ferguson and his assistant Archie Knox. Ferguson's patience with the Northern Ireland international soon ran out.
What happened next? Whiteside was transferred to Everton in the summer of 1989.