Eric and Me: Sir Alex
Reds boss Sir Alex Ferguson ponders where Cantona places among his shrewdest purchases…
Was Cantona my best ever signing? It’s a good question. Well, in terms of value, Eric was around £1million, Peter Schmeichel was £500,000, Brian McClair was £800,000 – they were all fantastic. Paul Ince was a million and a half and we sold him for eight, Ruud van Nistelrooy was value in terms of selling him, and the players we produced ourselves after signing them as schoolboys, they’re total profit.
Then you have Cristiano Ronaldo, £12m to £80m! If you’re talking about the best players in terms of value, then Schmeichel, Cantona, McClair, Ronaldo – unbelievable. But to analyse the signing as it was without talking about money, Eric certainly brought a great confidence to the team, there’s no doubt about that.
He brought an arrogance, and for him personally it was as if he had come to the place he always wanted to be. You could tell he would fit in straight away. He came on for the first time as a substitute against Man City, for Giggs. But when he came on I always remember his first pass, just a ten-yard simple pass – it was just genius. You knew then that he was fitting in.