Outgoing Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson was convinced they would regain the title from Manchester City on the very day they lost out last year. Ferguson, named the LMA's manager of the year for a record fourth time on Monday night, said: "At Sunderland last year we were champions for 10 seconds! But you can't win them all.
"That's when I thought we could win it again this season.
"I thought the players were really focused. I think adversity is the best recipe for success, I really do.
"There was good character in the team, enough experience, great resolve and purpose, and I felt we had a good chance, I really did."
Ferguson was also against "fast-tracking" of players into top coaching jobs.
"I'm dead against this fast-tracking of managers. Prepare, learn your trade, get your badges. Work for years at lower levels and you'll have a better chance'.
"You have to earn the right to be a manager."
Ferguson also revealed that his wife Cathy and children had not wanted him to take the United job after his success at Aberdeen - but he was persuaded to by Bobby Charlton.
He added: "When they first offered me the United job you jump at it. Then you think: What have I done?
"My wife didn't want to go, two of my sons didn't want to go. Jason, who is a United fan, he wanted me to go. It was Bobby Charlton who talked me into it."