Alan Shearer has revealed just how close he came to joining Manchester United when leaving Blackburn Rovers in 1996.
Shearer was speaking to The Athletic's 'Pod on the Tyne' podcast, and went into the move from Rovers that ultimately led him to return to Tyneside and stay for ten years.
"I saw [Keegan] first in the morning, I saw both him and Sir Alex on the same day in the same house," Shearer said.
"The Newcastle contingent came in the morning - you could see them coming with their blacked-out cars, pulling into the drive. It was like a presidential thing, it was unbelievable!
"We were actually in David Platt's mother-in-law's house in Cheshire. Talks had gone great, and then I saw Sir Alex in the afternoon.
"Then I went home and I said to the missus, 'I think I'm going to go to Man United, I think I've made my mind up. I'm not certain yet but I'm going to give it a few days.'"
⚫️ Talks with Keegan and Fergie on same day
⚪️ Telling his wife he was going to #MUFC@alanshearer tells @GeorgeCaulkin, @ChrisDHWaugh and @TaylorandPayne all about the day he decided to join #NUFC...
🎙️ 𝗣𝗢𝗗 𝗢𝗡 𝗧𝗛𝗘 𝗧𝗬𝗡𝗘
Listen now: https://t.co/yGVwYRD70y pic.twitter.com/Jdmx4CLMc5
— The Athletic UK (@TheAthleticUK) February 17, 2021
That's that, then. Or, as we know, not.
"Then I got a call a couple of days later off Kevin, he said 'can I have another meeting with you, another half an hour? The team are due to fly out to the Far East on a pre-season trip, but I'd like another half an hour with you.'
"So I said 'yeah, of course' as I still hadn't made my mind up. I was back to being 50-50 whether it was Newcastle or Man United.
"I just sat down with Keegan again and all the memories of the Gallowgate came flooding back. Believe it or not, of all places, I went to meet him in Manchester, just near Manchester Airport as he was going to fly out to the Far East.
"I thought 'you know what? I'm going to sign for Newcastle. My mind's made up, that's it. I can't let this opportunity go - it's always been my dream to go back home.
"That was it, I rang the missus up and said 'I'm at Manchester Airport, I'm going to sign for Newcastle. Can you pack me a bag?'"
"I said 'I'm going to need a bag, I'm going to be away for about ten days, either you bring it or put it in a taxi.' She packed me a bag, put it in a taxi, it was delivered to near Manchester Airport and that was it.
"I never ever went back to that house, I went out on pre-season to the Far Ear and that was it. The decision was made."