City are expected to beat United to the title tomorrow.
"We had to contend with Jose's management style, which was very effective," said Ferguson.
"He did a fantastic job there. You knew you were competing against a very clever manager. You weren't just facing the money, you were facing a very united squad.
"They were hard to beat. City - quality-wise - are very similar to Chelsea at that time. Some of their players have had outstanding seasons. When you win the league you need five or six players who are consistently good all the time.
"City have had that this year and the manager, for most of the part, has done well."