Man Utd hero nearly never joined Ferguson’s side after going off grid in Florida

Former Manchester United hero Teddy Sheringham came close to never joining the Premier League giants as he went off the grid while on holiday in Florida.

The surprise retirement of Eric Cantona at the end of the previous season left United searching for a new leading striker. Having become one of the best forwards in the top-flight during five years at Tottenham, Sheringham soon became the Red Devils' top target.

Having become a key player at Spurs, they were unwilling to let him leave for one of their rivals. But Monday marks a quarter of a century since United were able to persuade Tottenham to sell the England international.

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It was a move that very nearly never happened though, thanks to United being unable to contact Sheringham while he was on holiday. He revealed that he only found out about the proposed transfer when he returned to England from Florida.

“The only mention United had with me was a story that said [chairman] Martin Edwards thought I was too old and expensive. I said 'hmm' and dismissed the idea of coming here. To get £6million for a 31-year-old, someone would have to panic or be fairly desperate, even in a pretty insane transfer market," Sheringham said at his unveiling.

"It was half past one yesterday afternoon when I realised the deal was on. I'd only just returned when my mum and dad called saying they'd been trying to get hold of me because United were interested.

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"It was the best call I have ever had in my career. It's about time I won something and now I hope I can do it here. I'm sure people will start making comparisons between me and Eric. But I can only play my own game and hope it will be good enough for Manchester United."

The move would prove to be brilliant business for both Sheringham and United, with the striker scoring the crucial goals that helped them to win the treble in his second season at Old Trafford. Those trophies would not have been won if United had pulled their interest while Sheringham was uncontactable in America.


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