Alan Shearer has sensationally revealed that Manchester United's failure to call him back after a brief conversation with one of the club's representatives is part of the reason why he never moved to Old Trafford.
The Premier League's record goalscorer enjoyed a prolific playing career in England's top-flight at Southampton, Blackburn Rovers and then boyhood club Newcastle United, but there's always been an element of mystery about the reason why one of the country's most prolific marksman didn't go on to sign for Sir Alex Ferguson.
It was well documented that the Red Devils were interested in acquiring Shearer's services when he moved to St James' Park in 1996, but most people think it was the former Three Lions captain's affinity with the Magpies growing up that led him to Tyneside.
However, it now seems the 44-year-old would've considered Manchester United's offer had they phoned him back following initial discussions - an error that meant the 13-time Premier League champions missed out on one of the greatest players in English football history.
"After talks [with Kenny Dalglish] I went back home and had a call from someone at Manchester United," Shearer was quoted saying by the Daily Mirror in an interview with 5 live Sport's Joy of Rovers programme.
"They were interested, they wanted to sign me. I said 'I've promised Kenny I'd give him an answer within two or three days, I intend to do that. I would love to have talks with you.
"I never had a phone call back from Manchester United, so it was never an option."
Manchester United supporters will surely look back and wonder what might have been, although they didn't exactly struggle in Shearer's absence, winning five league titles during the talisman's ten-year spell with Newcastle.
However, it does beg the question how many more domestic crowns the Red Devils could've secured with the addition of the North-East legend - it's got to be up there with one of Ferguson's biggest transfer mistakes from his illustrious 27-year tenure in charge!
Shearer did not retire himself completely empty-handed, after winning the Premier League title in 1994/95 whilst at Ewood Park after forming a lethal strike partnership with Chris Sutton.
However, he was unable to replicate his Rovers success at Newcastle. The closest he came to lifting the trophy there was when they finished runners-up under Kevin Keegan in 1996/97, whilst also reaching the FA Cup final with the Magpies in 1998 and 1999.
Manchester United fans: Would you have liked to see Alan Shearer sign on at Old Trafford? How many more titles do you think the club would've won with him in the side? Have your say below...
Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: http://gms.to/writeforgms