A Conversation for Leeds United AFC - The Premiership Years 1992 - 2004

Unfounded Rumour re Cantona?

Post 1


There is still a lot of mystery surrounding the precise circumstances surrounding Eric Cantona's transfer to Man United in the late Eighties.

At the time United, while resurgent, had won nothing much. Their team needed a last ingredient to make them into world-beaters. Ferguson was struggling (lest we forget, under threat of the boot)to get the mix right but he just could not find it.

then all of a sudden, from a team who should have been least inclined to do favours for Man U, came the breakthrough: Eric Cantona, at the giveaway price of a mere one million pounds.

WHY did Leeds sell one of its best assets so quickly and so surprisingly for so little? Was it keen to dump a perceived liability, and why had Eric turned into a liability?

Is there any truth in the allegation that there had been a series of training and dressing-room punch-ups between Eric Cantona and roguish alleged wife-beater Lee Chapman?

The rumour, which will not die, has it that Cantona (who has a sort of old-fashioned gallantry and chivalry towards women)was so incensed to see Leslie Ash with a black eye and obvious bruising (perhaps she really did fall out of bed during rough sex?) that he allegedly came to conclusion Chapman had beaten her up, and allegedly sprang to her defence by kicking and punching Chapman from one side of the pitch to the other.... allegedly.

Allegedly Leeds put a total news embargo on the story, and I'm sure they investigated and found no truth in the allegations of wife-beating, as Chapman was never punished by the club. (Alleged stories that the club chairman told Chapman "tha can do what thee likes in thi own house, lad, if t'missus gives thee lip, but don't let it get into t'papers, reet?" are unfounded. This may be Yorkshire, after all, but Yorkshire in the 1990's..)

However, if one Leeds player had launched an unfounded assault on another on the training field in front of witnesses, it makes sense for this player to be abruptly transfer-listed, even if he goes to your greatest rivals and helps them to several league titles and a European cup...

Unfounded Rumour re Cantona?

Post 2

Secretly Not Here Any More

There's no truth in the Eric/Chappie bust-up. Cantona was sold because Wilkinson didn't like his arrogant attitude. Ferguson knew he could change Cantona from an arrogant potential great into the arguably greatest footballer the Premier League's ever seen so he bought him.

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