As he was handed the microphone, for once the old man looked rather small; a speck upon the stage of a well-used theatre upon which memories still echoed, and forever shall. It was May, and there was a suggestion of rain in the air. Flashes around him resembled stars, although it was far from darkness which surrounded the solitary figure. In fact, it was 75,000 people, watching on as emotions circulated and stung the atmosphere, whether it be through admiration or reluctance to accept the daunting nature an uncertain future.
Rugged, aged and hardened from the stress of victory, Sir Alex Ferguson concluded his rein at Old Trafford as the manager of Manchester United with an emotionally driven speech, and one which is now buried among the layers of memories that are to inevitably be written over with new blood; fresh ink for the Theatre of Dream's manuscripts.
Fans filed out of the stadium, morbidly, and in doing so, signified a fresh outset. Although, it was not simply a dawn for Manchester United; it was a revival for the Premier League itself, and the prospect of the unknown. A roundabout of events occurred: if Manchester United had not won the Premier League title, it would not be unreasonable to believe that Sir Alex Ferguson would still be manager of the club. David Moyes would therefore likely still be at Everton, Roberto Mancini may have been given more time by Sheikh Mansour had Manchester City not languished so far behind their rivals and lost all hope, and thus Roberto Martinez's CV would not seem as attractive if an in-form City had eased to an F.A Cup victory.
The finale of the season had no bearing upon Jose Mourinho's foreseeable return to Chelsea, although having the Portuguese return to the Premier League, with refreshed ambitions and a hunger that stems from a turbulent affair with Real Madrid can only, in the long term at least, emit warning lights for the fresh faces emerging as Mourinho's rivals. Mourinho is a character who the Premier League welcomed back with open arms; sure, he is arrogant, self-obsessed, controversial and outrageous on occasion - but who would want him away? The Premier League is a collection, a promotion of the absolute best English football can offer; and last season, such a collection did not live up to its potential brilliance.
Therefore, a refreshing was in order: a stripping and replacement of personnel occurred as aforementioned, and the new season, or new seasons, are set in stone, the new-look to English football's identity established. Although, this brings significant questions: can the quality and competitive nature of the Premier League still boast to be one of the greatest in the world? Or, following last season's stroll to the title for Manchester United, is it in decline?
This excerpt is from an article taken from the second edition of The Football Pink, the cliche-free and rather unconventional football magazine available on Amazon for only 99p. Buy your copy now:
The Football Pink series, available on Amazon Kindle