Manchester United players learned of Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement decision at 9am yesterday morning.

The Daily Mail says stars such as Wayne Rooney and Ryan Giggs were sitting having breakfast at United's training ground at 9am when they were summoned to a meeting in the dressing room, where Ferguson told them of his intentions.

The much-decorated manager then moved on to two other meetings, where he informed his coaches and administrative staff that Sunday's match against Swansea would be his last in charge at Old Trafford. The players were told not to tweet about their manager's departure.