Manchester United reveals why Sir Alex Ferguson refused to sign Zinedine Zidane back in 1996

Manchester United‘s former chairman Martin Edwards just revealed that Sir Alex Ferguson was once resented with an opportunity to sign Zinedine Zidane legend in 1996, but did not want to upset Zidane’s fellow countryman, Erica Cantona.

“Zinedine Zidane at Manchester United? It could have happened,” according to the club’s former chairman.

In 1996, Edwards claims that Manchester United were presented with an opportunity to sign Zidane, then 24, from Bordeaux. However, Ferguson did not make the move, as Zidane played in the same position as fellow France international Cantona and feared conflict, if he had pursued a deal.

“Zidane and Eric played in the same position and Alex felt if they brought Zidane in it would have upset Eric,” Edwards told BBC Radio 5 Live. Unfortunately for Man. United, Cantona retired a year later, leaving Edwards to wonder what could have been.

When asked if, looking back, United could have made room for both, Edwards said, “In hindsight yes, because Eric retired a year later and Zidane was younger so he would have continued it.”