Sir Alex Ferguson says both Real Madrid and Benfica were keeping tabs on Bebe prior to him joining Manchester United.
Manchester United boss agreed to pay £7.5 million for the striker he had never watched in person, while the player’s former agent later revealed Bebe was available for €150,000 just two months before Sir Alex decided to act.
The Scottish manager says he had to act quickly with Real Madrid and Benfica also tracking the Portuguese forward.
“He’d only played three of four games and our scouts insisted that we should sign him. It was a bit of a leap into the dark really because we hadn’t seen him play, we sent one of our scouts down to see him play in the last game before we signed him and then he comes up and says there’s something exceptional here, we’re maybe seeing something really special, and so we took the gamble.
“It was one of those instinctive things; you have a smell about something and you take it. So he’s joined us but physically, he wasn’t ready, hasn’t done a proper pre-season, so the last few weeks since he’s joined, we’ve been working on him physically.”
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