Graeme Souness Admits He Turned Down Signing Eric Cantona For Liverpool

Graeme Souness Admits He Turned Down Signing Eric Cantona For Liverpool

Graeme Souness has admitted he passed up the chance to sign Eric Cantona and Peter Schmeichel whilst he was Liverpool manager – allowing the pair to join arch rivals Manchester United.

Souness was arguably Liverpool’s greatest-ever player during his trophy-laden heyday, after the fearless midfielder went on to win countless titles at Anfield – including three European Cups.

But his spell as manager at the Reds isn’t looked back upon with similar affection, to say the least.

Souness managed to win just one FA Cup in his three-year tenure in charge as Sir Alex Ferguson’s United side came to prominence, and it turns out they might’ve had a hand from their old rivals.

United went on to completely dominate the 1990s and set themselves up as the global force they remain today, and two of their most inspiring players were Cantona and Schmeichel.

Writing in his column for the Sunday Times, the ex-Scotland captain revealed: “I missed out on two players who went on to become Manchester United legends.

“Ron Yeats, the chief scout then, told me there was a young Danish goalkeeper — Peter Schmeichel — who was a Liverpool fan and willing to pay his own travel and hotel in exchange for some time with us.

“I was trying to ease out Bruce Grobbelaar and that was proving a hassle, plus I had just signed David James, so I thought I could do without a rookie keeper.

“Eric Cantona was another I missed out on.

“We played Auxerre at home and Michel Platini came to see me afterwards.

“He said he had a player for me, a problem boy but a proper player. It was Cantona, but I said the last thing I needed was another problem player.

“I had 30-pluses I was trying to get out, so I didn’t need more hassle. I said I was looking for something else and so it was no thanks.”

Can you imagine if both players had ended up in Merseyside instead of Manchester? Just imagine how different the footballing landscape in this country might be today!

What do you think of the anecdote?

Let us know in the comments section below…

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