Ferguson praises Owen after Manchester United departure

The 32 year-old striker was told earlier in the week that the club would not be offering him a new deal and brought an end to a three-year stint at Old Trafford
Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has praised the professionalism of Michael Owen after it was revealed that the club will not be offering him a new contract at the end of the season.

Owen, 32, moved to the club in 2009 on a free transfer from Newcastle and looks set to have to go through the whole rigmarole of finding himself a new club again this summer. Ferguson, though, remained thankful for Owen's contribution while at the club and praised the player's attitude.

"It is a pleasure to have had Michael at Manchester United," Ferguson told the club's official website.

"Michael is a consummate professional and was an influential figure in our dressing room. Unfortunately he had no luck with his injury this season.

"Michael's record of goals per game is exceptional and we wish him all the best for the future."

The former England international scored has been plagued by injury during his stay at Old Trafford but still boasted an impressive record 17 goals in 52 games for the club, although just five of those came in the Premier League.