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The Player Sir Alex Ferguson Wanted Before Signing Robin Van Persie

The Player Sir Alex Ferguson Wanted Before Signing Robin Van Persie

Sir Alex Ferguson's £24 million capture of Robin van Persie proved to be a masterstroke for one season after the Dutchman scored 26 goals to fire United to the 2012/13 Premier League title.

But it was the definition of a short-term signing by Ferguson, who was desperate to complete his 26-year stint at Old Trafford with a 13th league crown.

He did just that thanks to the irresistible form of Van Persie that season but the Dutchman was approaching 29 and quickly declined in the seasons that followed.

Image: PA
Image: PA
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And it's emerged from journalist Rory Smith that the fiery Scot was weighing up signing a 24-year old Robert Lewandowski from Borussia Dortmund after he bagged 30 goals for the Bundesliga outfit, but went for a quick fix addition as opposed to someone who would lead the line for years to come.

"What Ferguson did in the last couple of years, and it's totally understandable and he deserved the chance to do it, was say 'I want my title, I want to go out on a high with the title,'" Smith said on BBC Radio 5 Live.

"So when they signed Van Persie, there was one other striker that they were looking at. That one other striker was Robert Lewandowski.

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"Now a club who is thinking about the long term says: now Van Persie's fantastic but Lewandowski will be our first-choice number nine, potentially, for - I mean, he's still going now - so another seven years.

"You go and sign Lewandowski, you don't sign Van Persie."

Van Persie's league goals tally dropped to 12 and 10 in his last two campaigns at United and he then moved to Fenerbahce in Turkey before ending his career with boyhood club Feyenoord.

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Of course Lewandowski has gone on to become one of the best, if the not the best, strikers in European football and helped Bayern Munich to a domestic double this season.

His 34 goals in 31 games in the Bundesliga have led many to claim he would have won the Ballon d'Or if it hadn't been cancelled this year.

The 31-year-old has scored 11 goals in just six games in the Champions League and the German champions are many people's favourites to win the tournament.

Topics: Football News, Manchester United, Robert Lewandowski, Sir Alex Ferguson, Transfer stories, Transfer rumours, Robin van Persie, Premier League, Arsenal, Transfer news, Bayern Munich, Transfer reports, Bundesliga, European Football

Josh Lawless

Josh is a sports journalist who specialises in football and wrestling. He has been published by Curzon Ashton FC, Late Tackle, Manchester City FC, The Mirror, Read Man City and Manchester Evening News. He provides coverage of professional wrestling and has interviewed some of the biggest names in the field - including the first UK interview with The Hardy Boyz after their return to WWE. He has never sported a pair of Lonsdale Slip-ons, contrary to reports.