By Claire West

Manchester United manager, Sir Alex Ferguson has displayed once more his great leadership skills in writing a letter to all supporters going to Sunday's Premier League game against arch rivals Liverpool urging them to show respect and ‘behave’.

Author and leadership expert Barry Jackson has previously written that; ‘Whether we care to admit it or not, even the most independent of us model our behaviour on the behaviour of others, usually people we look up to.’

This is probably even more the case in sport and Sir Alex realises this and hopes that his influence can help bring to an end "beyond the pale" animosity between the two great clubs.

Previously Sir Alex has pleaded with United and Liverpool supporters to try and "understand each other's problems" and reminded them that "both clubs had suffered fatalities through football".

The letter below goes one step further and shows why Ferguson has been at the top of his ‘game’ for so many years.


"Dear Supporter,
"The great support you gave the team here [at Anfield] last season has seen our allocation back up to near-full levels. I want you to continue that progress today.
"But today [Sunday] is about much more than not blocking gangways. Today is about thinking hard about what makes United the best club in the world.
"Our rivalry with Liverpool is based on a determination to come out on top - a wish to see us crowned the best against a team that held that honour for so long.
"It cannot and should never be based on personal hatred. Just ten days ago, we heard the terrible, damning truth about the deaths of 96 fans who went to watch their team try and reach the FA Cup final and never came back. What happened to them should wake the conscience of everyone connected with the game.
"Our great club stands with our great neighbours Liverpool today to remember that loss and pay tribute to their campaign for justice. I know I can count on you to stand with us in the best traditions of the best fans in the game.
"Yours sincerely, Sir Alex Ferguson."