Manchester United manager, Sir Alex Ferguson, is often praised for his shrewd transfer dealings that have brought so much success to Old Trafford over his 26-year tenure.
Rio Ferdinand, Eric Cantona, Ruud van Nistelrooy, and a young Cristiano Ronaldo all arrived under various levels of scrutiny but rose to become title winners for Ferguson and his Red Devils. Yet, there have been some duds in the Scotsman’s transfer dealings, with Bebe quite possibly his biggest ever mistake.
Bebe, the infamous Portuguese striker brought to Old Trafford for £7.4m, despite Ferguson having never even seen him play, is the manager’s ultimate flop after playing just six games, scoring twice, since arriving in 2010. That is £1.2m a game and £3.7m a goal.
A stint at Besiktas over the 2011/12 season did little to convince Ferguson he was ready for the big time at Old Trafford, and after six months sat on the bench of the reserves, Bebe has finally been moved on – possibly for the last time.
The striker has gone out on loan to Portuguese mid-table side, Rio Ave, and is unlikely ever to return. He will go down as Ferguson’s worst value-for-money signing: worse then Juan Veron, Kleberson, Eric Djemba Djemba, and Diego Forlan. These flops at least showed some signs of ability and flourished outside the Premier League, but Bebe has done nothing, it seems, in his entire career.
So, when United fans in the betting world see their ultimate reserve striker go out on loan this January, they can breathe a huge sigh of relief and good riddance to a real embarrassment to the club.
Ferguson was made to look a mug by the entire Bebe affair and will have learned his lesson from this. It was a PR disaster and proved the manager does not have control over everything at Old Trafford, something Ferguson has stringently resurrected since then.