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Scot insists that everything is "black and white" and he will have no hesitation about letting players go if they are not producing or are holding the side back

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has hinted that he could be in line to let go of some of his players during the summer, by suggesting that he has no fear of getting rid of some of his charges.

Several players are nearing the conclusion of their careers or the end of their contracts and the Scot insists that he will have no trouble chopping his squad if he needs to.

"It's a horrible thing to say but you can't be sentimental in this job," Ferguson said, according to The Sun.

"My job is to manage United, to produce results and I am no different from any other manager. I'll not be regarded in the same way if I'm not successful.

"Everything to do with me is black and white."

He added: "If it's on the football field and I see something I feel is a retrograde step, I have to act and make decisions.

"It is something that I have always been good at.

"I can make quick decisions and I am lucky that way.

"In management, you have to be able to make decisions - sometimes you're not right. But it doesn't concern me too much because the important thing is being able to do it."

Ferguson has had to make tough decisions through the course of his career and admitted that he found it difficult to face academy graduates Phil Neville and Nicky Butt prior to their departures.

Butt joined Newcastle in 2004 as a replacement for Gary Speed, while a year later Neville moved to Everton.

"I love the players that I've had and I've been very, very fortunate to have had great players who have come through my career with me," Ferguson said.

"At Aberdeen there were the likes of [Willie] Miller, [Alex] McLeish, and [Stuart] Kennedy, who were players that were very loyal to me.

"At United I've had [Ryan] Giggs, the Nevilles, [Paul] Scholes and Butt, who represent the spirit of the club. All of the players that I have had here have played a part in my success.

"So when I see something happening, as in the cases of Nicky Butt and Phil Neville, I have had to release them to other opportunities.

"It was getting to the stage that I was terrified of talking to them and telling them they weren't playing.

"It wasn't fair to them because they were good players and played a big part in the resurrection of United.

"When the time came for me to let them go, I knew I was cutting really important, loyal strings and I didn't enjoy it."

Owen Hargreaves and Michael Owen's contracts are set to expire after the end of the season, while there has been speculation concerning the futures of Wes Brown, Darron Gibson, Tomasz Kuszczak, Gabriel Obertan and Dimitar Berbatov.

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