Sir Alex Ferguson was targeted on no fewer than three occasions for the England manager's job, according to former Football Association executive director David Davies.
Davies, who spent more than a decade at the FA before leaving his post two years ago, revealed the Manchester United boss was first in the frame after Terry Venables quit in 1996.
"After Terry Venables, I wanted Fergie," Davies told the Herald. "I was absolutely clear he was the best person for the job. I was a personal friend of Sir Roland Smith, then chairman of Manchester United, and he didn't totally kick the idea into touch. I was vaguely encouraged."
Davies added: "I don't think he ever came near becoming the England manager.
"The idea of Alex leading England out at Hampden is somewhat far-fetched. He is a very, very proud Scot. He was, I think, tickled by the idea, though.
"When I recruited Keegan, I would have loved Ferguson to become manager. But the conversations were very brief."
Davies also claims the FA wanted former Scotland boss Andy Roxburgh to revolutionise how the game was run south of the border.
According to Davies, the UEFA technical director was headhunted from 2004 into 2005 to perform a similar role for England.
"We had a lot of enthusiasm for him," said Davies. "He was held in the highest regard by the FA and seen as a man who could improve the game here at grassroots and in terms of coaching.
"He was clearly committed to what he was doing so there was no way forward."
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