Manchester United are one of three Premier League clubs to have made enquiries about signing Harry Kane this summer.
The Red Devils, along with Manchester City and Chelsea, harbour long-term interest in Kane and may look to pounce now he has informed Tottenham of his desire to leave this summer.
If the England striker were to move from Spurs to Old Trafford, he would be following in the footsteps of players including Teddy Sheringham, Michael Carrick and Dimitar Berbatov, each of whom Sir Alex Ferguson signed.
To land Carrick in 2006 and Berbatov two years later, Ferguson entered negotiations with Spurs chairman Daniel Levy, who has a reputation for driving a hard bargain.
And the legendary Scot’s recollection of dealing with Levy serves as a warning to United as they weigh up an enormous summer bid for Kane.
“I must say negotiations were very difficult and went on for ages,” said Ferguson of Carrick’s £18.6million transfer.
“I always remember I thought it was done and [former Spurs chief executive] David Gill phoned me on the golf course to say they want more.
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“Typical Daniel Levy! It was very hard to negotiate but, at the end of the day, we got it through and, ever since he joined us, he’s had a fantastic career.”
Ferguson went further as he recalled negotiations to sign Bulgarian striker Berbaov in a £30.75million transfer in 2008.
He declared: “That whole experience was more painful than my hip replacement!”
Nonetheless, writing in his book ‘Alex Ferguson, My Autobiography’, Ferguson reserved praise for Levy’s no-nonsense approach which puts Spurs first.
“You can’t discuss both sides of the issue with Daniel,” said Ferguson. “It’s about him, and Tottenham, nothing more, which is no bad thing from his club’s perspective.”
In light of Ferguson’s comments about Levy – and Kane’s reported £150million price tag – United are sure to face a fierce and prolonged battle to sign the England captain.