FORMER Dunfermline Athletic player and legendary Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson is out of intensive care after surgery.

The 76-year-old suffered a brain haemorrhage and is in a Salford hospital after undergoing an emergency operation on Saturday.

He will continue his recovery as an inpatient at the hospital, and a statement released by United 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 of his illness came a week after Sir Alex, who played for the Pars for three years in the 1960s, made a fond return to East End Park to watch his old team take on Dumbarton.

He had joined up with Jim Leishman, former team-mate Bert Paton, current Pars boss Allan Johnston and members of the squad ahead of the game to mark the 50th anniversary since the club's second, and to date last, triumph in the competition.

A short statement from the club said: "Everyone at DAFC is thinking of Sir Alex Ferguson at this difficult time."

After signing from St Johnstone in 1964, Sir Alex went on to hit 91 goals for Dunfermline, including seven in European competition.

He was part of the Athletic team that narrowly missed out on the Scottish league title, and lost the Scottish Cup final 3-2 to Jock Stein's Celtic, in 1965 before finishing as the league's joint-top scorer in the following season alongside the Hoops' Joe McBride.

In 1967, he was transferred to Rangers for £65,000 – then a record fee for a transfer between two Scottish clubs – before going on to lead Aberdeen and United to domestic and European glory.