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'My United move only happened thanks to Benzema'

Pin Owen joined Manchester United from Newcastle back in 2009. ManUtd
Owen joined Manchester United from Newcastle back in 2009. ManUtd

'My United move only happened thanks to Benzema'

Jack Ottman by Jack Ottman @jackottman - 0 5,120

Michael Owen has revealed that he has Karim Benzema to thank for his move to Old Trafford back in 2009, because the former Lyon striker opted for Real Madrid over Manchester United.

The former striker, talking to 'Canal+', said that Alex Ferguson's first choice was Karim Benzema, then at Lyon.

At the time, the Frenchman was one of the most wanted striker's around after two impressive Ligue 1 campaigns where he netted 37 times in 72 games.

He had to choose between United or Madrid, and evidently went for the latter in a move worth £25m back in 2009, which cleared the path for Owen to move from Newcastle to Old Trafford.

Owen started his career in a goal-filled eight years with Liverpool, and his move to arguably their most bitter rivals did not go down well with the Anfield faithful.

However, it seems that the Ballon d'Or winner was desparate to play under Sir Alex Ferguson and even thanked Benzema for opening the door for him.

He said: "I've actually got something to thank Benzema for, he might not know but I wouldn't have gone to Manchester United if it wasn't for him.

"They wanted to buy Benzema [but] he chose Madrid. I was told by Sir Alex Ferguson that we want Benzema but if he doesn't come then you're coming, so I was pleading with him to go to Real Madrid, so thank you to him."

Owen spent three seasons at the Red Devils, although his spell mainly consisted of substitute and cup appearances.

He scored five times in his 31 United appearances, including a famous last minute winner against local rivals City in a 4-3 Premier League win in 2009.

Jack Ottman

Jack Ottman

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