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Sir Alex Ferguson thought Class of '92 were 'off their heads' to buy Salford

Nicky Butt has praised the current Manchester United youth academies, and discussed how important it is that they're coached in the right way during their younger years.
With Marcus Rashford joining an already extensive injury list, Paul Mariner assesses how Man United will be able to cope.

SALFORD, England -- Former Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson says he thought the Class of '92 were "off their heads" when they bought Salford City.

Ex-United players Gary Neville, Phil Neville, Ryan Giggs, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes purchased the non-league club in 2014.

They have overseen two promotions up to the National League North and Salford are now just two more promotions from the Football League.

"I'm not surprised you've taken this step," said Ferguson, speaking at an event to rename Salford's ground the Peninsula Stadium after agreeing a naming-rights deal with Salford-based company Peninsula.

"What you've done is given something back into an area that has given you a platform.

"Some people, maybe me included, thought you were off your heads, but nonetheless, wanting to put something back in is a measure of the character you've got.

"Whatever you've achieved, it's always been with purpose, energy and belief in what you're doing and that's terrific."

Salford are currently second in the National League North table, three points behind leaders Harrogate Town.

They went full-time in the summer and the newly-formed youth team have reached the first round of the FA Youth Cup -- a competition that made the Class of '92 famous -- for the first time in the club's history.

Gary Neville said: "We are proud. I'm more proud of the fact that the original people are still here than the fact that we've improved the stadium.

"I knew we would improve the stadium at some point, but not to this level, and I didn't think we would get here so quickly."

Rob is ESPN FC's Manchester United correspondent. Follow him on Twitter @RobDawsonESPN.

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