Sir Alex Ferguson’s 10 Worst Signings at Manchester United

Sir Alex Ferguson was recognised for spotting and recruiting top-class talent, but over the course of 27 years at the one club, his decisions didn’t always pan out. These are his 10 worst signings at Manchester United...

We are part of The Trust Project What is it?

During his long, record-breaking tenure as manager of Manchester United, Alex Ferguson brought a total of 99 players into the club.

“Sometimes you're not sure about a player,” he once said.

The manager commented at the time “he looks like a Manchester United player in every sense”. Not quite

“Sometimes you doubt. Sometimes you have to guess. And sometimes ... you just know.”

It's safe to say these 10 didn’t pan out quite as hoped:


In 2003, Ferguson signed little-known Djemba-Djemba from Nantes for £3.5 million (S$6 million), with the United manager commenting at the time “he looks like a Manchester United player in every sense”.

Not quite.

The Cameroonian marked his debut with an overly aggressive tackle on Arsenal’s Sol Campbell, which was labeled “obscene” by Arsene Wenger and prompted the Gunners defender to kick out at the young midfielder.

He lasted less than two seasons at the club before being sold to Aston Villa for just £1.5 million.

Djemba-Djemba then bounced all over Europe and beyond, making stops in Qatar, Israel and Indonesia, among others.

He was also the subject of the ironic chant, "So good they named him twice".


Despite the fact Ferguson was in the twilight of his long career when he signed Tiago Manuel Dias Correia from his native Portugal in 2010, it still taught the Scotsman a lesson.

Ferguson famously hadn’t seen Bebe play up close, relying only on footage and the recommendation of scouts.

He was just 20 when the Red Devils paid in excess of £7 million for the striker, but he would only end up making a handful of appearances before being sent out on a series of loans – none of which helped.

Bebe eventually joined Benfica from United in 2014 and is currently playing for Eibar in Spain.

[NEXT: Ronaldo's "replacement" and a double flop]