Sir Alex Ferguson out of intensive care after brain haemorrhage surgery

Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson is out of intensive care following surgery on a brain haemorrhage, the club have announced.

The 76-year-old is to continue his rehabilitation in hospital in Salford, according to a statement.

The club said: "Sir Alex no longer needs intensive care and will continue rehabilitation as an inpatient.

"His family have been overwhelmed by the level of support and good wishes but continue to request privacy as this will be vital during this next stage of recovery."

The news came hours after the club's present manager Jose Mourinho said he expected his players to raise their game when they return to action for the first time since Ferguson's surgery.

Mourinho was speaking ahead of Thursday's Premier League match at West Ham, when he was asked about the former United manager, who won 38 trophies during his Old Trafford tenure.

"His family asked for privacy and that is what I am going to respect," Mourinho said. "But (as a club) we are positive. We are very, very positive. We are confident."

Asked if it would influence the mood of the players or United coaching staff going into Thursday night's match at the London Stadium, Mourinho replied: "No, I can only think that if there is any relation, it is a positive relation."

Gestures of support continue for the Scot, who retired in 2013 having guided United to 13 Premier League titles as well as five FA Cups and the Champions League twice.

Wales manager and former United winger Ryan Giggs echoed the sentiments of former players under Ferguson, whom he felt now brings football together in support for his recovery.

"You've seen the response, not just from within football but from people all around the world. It shows how much he means to people. I'm not surprised," Giggs, speaking at the launch of the FAW and McDonald's Grassroots Football Awards, told Press Association Sport.

"No matter who you support you've got to recognise what he's done for the game. Like everyone I was shocked to hear the news, I was with him just a couple of weeks ago at a dinner."

Former France striker Eric Cantona joined the words of support for the recovery for his former manager, appearing in a short video clip on posted on Twitter declaring: "It's Fergie time and you will win. You always do."

"This friend of mine, he is not doing too well," Cantona said in a video on Eurosport's official Twitter feed captioned: The Commissioner of Football.

"He is like a mentor to me, he nurtured me, he never judged me.

"He is such a fighter, he will pull through. It is Fergie time, and you will win. You always do."

- Ryan Giggs was speaking at the launch of the 2018 FAW & McDonald's Grassroots Football Awards. Nominate any deserving grassroots heroes at www.mcdonalds.co.uk/awards.

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