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Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson wanted to sign Lee Chapman ahead of then Leeds striker Eric Cantona, it has been revealed.

In his new book, 'United We Fall', being serialised in The Sun, former Leeds chairman Peter Ridsdale wrote that Ferguson did not hesitate to swoop when the Frenchman was sold by Leeds following a bust-up with boss Howard Wilkinson, who dropped him for a match at QPR.

Ridsdale said: "I was in the team hotel. Howard was the other side of some double doors dropping his bombshell.

"The next thing I heard was a clatter — perhaps a chair going over — and a single door flew open banging against a wall. Cantona stormed out in a whirlwind of red mist.

"He went to Paris instead of Loftus Road and his days with Leeds were numbered.

"Two games later he was sold to United.

"They had asked about Lee Chapman but were offered Cantona instead. They must have done cartwheels.

"Our fans felt betrayed — selling Cantona to our title rivals was tantamount to swapping religions."
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