Dwight Yorke remains a huge favourite with many Manchester United fans.
Not only was he one of the legends from the unforgettable Treble team, he was simply a goal machine who helped to bring so much success to the club.
On top of that, Yorke always played his football with a smile on his face which brought so much infectious joy to so many people.
In the end, his departure from Old Trafford was not in the best of circumstances which left a sour taste in his mouth but he retains very little bitterness.
Yorke mostly only has happy memories of his time at Old Trafford.
His newly released book covers previously untold, behind the scenes stories together with the off field dramas he went through with previous partner Katie Price.
It’s football that most fans will be interested in however so the following extracts from his book will only deal with football matters.
You’re sure to find it an interesting read.
Extracts from “Born To Score” by DOUGLAS WIGHT of News Of The World
Fergie Bust Up Drove Me To Drink
DWIGHT YORKE suffered the worst days of his career after falling out with Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson.
Despite winning the Treble and a hat-trick of Premier League titles, Yorke admits he spent the final three months of his glorious Old Trafford career getting drunk every Sunday in a bar while watching his fellow pros on TV.
Fergie had been looking to flog the golden boy striker to Middlesbrough following a series of bust-ups over his playboy lifestyle.
Yorke’s only hope was that Fergie had insisted he would retire at the end of the season.
Then came a very blunt warning from skipper Roy Keane that sent Yorke spiralling into despair.
“Yorkie – you’re f***ed, mate,’ he said as I arrived for training,” recalls Yorke in his new autobiography.
“He was right. Fergie had announced he had postponed all notion of retirement. I smiled at Keano’s brutal assessment of where I now stood at the club but it cut deep.
“The news was crushing. Those were the lowest days of my career and now the most determined bachelor at Old Trafford was paying for his single life.
“There was no one around to find comfort with. Just a big empty house, packed with possessions and material wealth – but still just big and empty.
“I started to drink again. I wasn’t an alcoholic. But it helped to ease the loneliness.
“I was like a zombie. I’d call my mates and go out in an effort to try to forget what was happening but it could not fill the emptiness inside me.
“No matter how I tried, I couldn’t get Fergie to change his mind about me and that only added to the frustration.
“In my first year at United I had scored 29 goals in 48 games. My second, 24 in 41. Even in my third I was still on that goal-every-other- game ratio of 13 from 25, despite starting fewer games.
“Regardless of the mistakes of judgement off it, I did not feel I had ever let United down on the pitch. And now I was with the reserves.
“As my career fizzled out at United I became a Sunday afternoon fixture at Brasingamens, a well-known bar in Alderley Edge.
“For the last two or three months of my United career, I would sit watching the live game on Sky TV and slowly get hammered. It became a depressing fixture in my life. I had no appetite to go anywhere else.
“I still had a smile on my face, trying to disguise the hurt I was feeling but, inside, I was in despair.”
Yorke’s first ‘hairdryer’ rollicking from Fergie came at half-time during a 3-1 defeat at Sheffield Wednesday in November 1998 and he admits it left him “shocked.”
He got another shock after Fergie accused him of “failing” in the season after United’s historic Treble.
“Only at United,” adds Yorke, “could you follow up the amazing triumph of the Treble by winning the Premier League again, this time by a record distance, and still have Sir Alex chill you to the bone with his damning verdict as that second season closed: ‘Yorkie – you’re failing.'”
Yorke fell foul of Fergie’s temper again in September, 2000, after returning to United a day late from Trinidad following a 4-0 World Cup qualifying victory over Canada.
Yorke admits he deliberately missed his scheduled flight for an “aboslutely wild night” of partying.
“Fergie lost his cool with me for the first time in the confrontation that followed,” says Yorke. “He was angry and frustrated.
“Fergie’s words of warning echoed around my head: If you are not 100 per cent committed here, you will suffer the consequences.
“I was in Fergie’s bad books again later that same September when we prepared for a home match with Chelsea.
“Fergie told me I had not made the 16-man squad and I didn’t like it. I felt there was nothing I could do to please him. And instead of hanging around all glum-faced, I left the stadium before kick-off.
“The next day I got the call to go to Fergie’s office again.
“What the hell were you playing at?'” he raged at me. “You stay and support your team-mates at all times.
“Do you think you are bigger than the team?’ He was right, of course, I know that now. But I had never been in this position before and I was struggling to know how to handle it. An awful lot of what subsequently happened to me at United stemmed from that weekend. Things were getting beyond my control. After one trip to Dublin I had a confrontation with the boss that shook me to my core.”
Yorke was due to catch a 6.45am flight back to Manchester in time to get to the training ground for 10am.
But this time the flight WAS delayed. Yorke was late and with Fergie already at training, the striker tried to sneak in without being spotted.
“No chance. ‘Yorkie, come here!’ screamed that voice. And in front of the entire squad I was subjected to a tirade that left me shaking.
“Until you show more commitment to this club, then this club doesn’t want you here!’ he screamed at me. ‘And the rate you’re going, you won’t be here much longer anyway.’ It was crushing and humiliating. The tension between myself and Fergie had been growing and there would be one more conflict with Fergie before the season’s end.”
It came after a night out with a pal in an Edinburgh bistro. They were stopped by police on the drive back to his pal’s flat and his friend failed a breath test.
“I had been caught breaking Fergie’s rule of no drinking 48 hours before a game,” says Yorke.
“I got another rollicking to ensure the season ended on a sour, sour note.
“Of course, I can look back now and see things clearly.
“I had f***ed up off the pitch and had been caught out too many times.
“The word was out that I was a prime candidate to be eased out of the club, the manager having finally grown weary of my ‘playboy lifestyle’. My life was falling apart.” It had all been so different when Fergie splashed out £12.6million to sign the Trinidad and Tobago frontman from Aston Villa 11 years ago.
Yorke won the incredible Treble in his first season and went on to help United clinch a hat-trick of Premier League titles and was also an FA Cup winner.
Despite the bust- ups, Yorke admits the most successful manager in United’s history is a “genius.”
“My respect for Fergie remains, to this day, enormous,” says Yorke.
“For all the rows, for all the full-throttle old-fashioned b******ings that came my way in our four years together, he remains the greatest in my eyes – a man to whom I owe so much.”