Peter Davenport revealed to Setanta.com that Manchester United seriously considered appointing Brian Clough as club manager.
Clough has been the subject of many discussions of late, as the biographical film of his time as a manager, 'The Damned United', has just been released in cinemas.
Both Ferguson and Clough are figureheads of top-flight management, and Davenport had the privilege of playing under both gaffers, signing for Manchester United from Nottingham Forest back in 1986.
Ron Atkinson was sacked during Davenport's tenure at United, and in the quest to find a new manager for the side, the ex-striker felt that chairman Martin Edwards was keen on having Clough take over at the club.
Despite press reports suggesting a link between the two at the time, Edwards denied that any offer was made to Clough before appointing Sir Alex at Old Trafford. However, Davenport has now revealed that Edwards spoke to him three times about the whole affair, requesting his opinion on Clough as a manager.
"Martin was always intrigued at the possibility of getting Brian Clough," claimed Davenport.
"He asked what he was like, how he operated, and Martin would have been very pleased if Clough had ever been in the frame for the United job. I think he would have got it.
"At that stage Clough was at the height of his powers, had won the European Cup twice. But Forest had finished higher than United [in the First Division] a couple of seasons before, so the teams were in similar positions.
"I don’t think he [Edwards] ever made a move, but I think he had a lot of respect for Clough."
Stephen Crawford, Goal.com