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Eric Cantona

How Sheffield Wednesday let Eric Cantona slip out of their grasp


Things could have been so different for Sheffield Wednesday. The Yorkshire club, currently in League One, were the first English club to give a trial to French legend Eric Cantona in 1992. As you’ll see from the video accompanying this article, Cantona even played one game for Wednesday, albeit an indoor game, but still, it’s quite an interesting chapter in the history of the temperamental Frenchman nicknamed King Eric.

After playing in the indoor game, Sheffield Wednesday manager Trevor Francis insisted that Cantona extend his trial by one week so he could see how Cantona played on grass. In hindsight, it was a ridiculous request by Francis when you consider that Cantona had already played almost 200 league games in France by that point. So, not surprisingly, Cantona refused to extend his trial and joined Yorkshire neighbors Leeds United instead.

The rest, as they say, is history. Under Cantona, Leeds United went on to win the league title and Charity Shield in 1992. Cantona was then sold later that year to Manchester United for £1.2 million. At Manchester United, Cantona won the player of the year award, four Premier League titles, two FA Cups and three Charity Shields.

Was this a massive mistake by Trevor Francis? Watch the video and you decide!


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