The first question posed by Sir Alex Ferguson to Newcastle United legend Alan Shearer during the transfer talks

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Sir Alex Ferguson said he had “no chance” to sign Alan Shearer after discovering that Newcastle United legend Kevin Keegan saw the striker first on a remarkable day in 1996.

Just months after revising the Magpies’s 12-point lead to the top of the Premier League, Sir Alex sought to boost his strike force by signing Gosforth’s Gosforth native of Blackburn Rovers.

The English captain had just won the gold shoe at the European Championships and had scored at least 34 goals in each of his three previous seasons at Blackburn, pulling his team to the title in 1995.

Manchester United and Newcastle knew it would take a world record fee to keep Shearer away from Blackburn, so it will depend on who made the most compelling pitch for the attacker.

“I sat with Kevin Keegan and Sir Alex the same day in a Cheshire house,” said Shearer during the game of the day. “Believe it or not, it was the home of David Platt’s stepmother.

“I saw Kevin Keegan in the morning and the discussions went very well, very positive, then Kevin and the contingent from Newcastle left.

“So, of course, the contingent of Man United came in, who was Sir Alex, and Sir Alex’s first question was,” Do I see you first or do I see you second? I said, “I saw Kevin this morning” and I’m not going to say his words to you. He basically said, “I don’t stand a chance then.”

“In other words, he wanted to see me first and was disappointed not to have done so, but I thought the talks went very well, really positive. I was very impressed with what he had to say.

“I asked if I could take the sanctions and his response was,” Well, Eric is on them. And I said, “I know, but can I take them?” He sort of looked at me with those steel eyes as if to say that I’m not saying that to Eric Cantona.



“Then I had to go and I had to make a decision and at one point I was going to Manchester United. I was 90% sure I was going to go, but I sat down and got another call from Kevin a day or two later, who asked to see me again and I thought, ” I’m going back to Newcastle. “

“This is a club that I have always supported, I wanted to play for and I know you will ask me the following question:” Do I have any regrets? The answer is no, I didn’t do it. I would do the exact same thing. ”

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