Sir Alex Ferguson finally 'forgives' ex-Chelsea ace he scared to death after Man Utd controversy

Sir Alex Ferguson watches from the Directors Box during the Barclays Women´s Super League match between Manchester United and Chelsea FC  at Old Trafford on May 18, 2024 in Manchester, England
-Credit: (Image: (Photo by John Peters/Manchester United via Getty Images))

John Obi Mikel's failed Manchester United transfer appears to be water under the bridge after revealing Sir Alex Ferguson has "forgiven" his controversial U-turn.

It was back in 2005 that United announced they had agreed a deal to sign Mikel shortly after his 18th birthday. The 91-cap former Nigeria international was playing for Norwegian club Lyn at the time and was even photographed wearing the Red Devils kit ahead of his move to England.

However, said transfer to Old Trafford never materialised as he reneged on the contract and joined Chelsea instead the following year. Ferguson, 82, was incensed at the time and described the Blues' behaviour in the transfer saga as "disgusting," but he's got no grudge with Mikel today.

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That's after the ex-midfield anchor - who won two Premier League titles with the Blues - uploaded a picture of him alongside Ferguson at Saturday's Champions League final. The pair were both in attendance at Wembley, where Real Madrid struck late to seal a 2-0 win over Borussia Dortmund and reclaim the European crown.

Mikel posted the picture on his Instagram story along with a smiley face and the caption: "The boss @siralexferguson 26. He has forgiven me." However, the two-time Chelsea Young Player of the Year has previously explained how Ferguson "forgot about it and forgave" him years after the furore.

Mikel John Obi and Sir Alex Ferguson at the 2024 Champions League final
Mikel has been forgiven all these years after rejecting Manchester United in favour of a move to Chelsea -Credit:mikel_john-obi/Instagram

Appearing on The Debrief podcast last year, Mikel explained: "I saw him one time, it was Manchester United against Chelsea, I was coming out of the dressing room and as I was coming out of the door at the corner he was coming out and I just s*** myself.

"I can't remember what happened, I think I tripped up on the stairs, he looked at me and he just walked out. He started chewing his gum and just walked out. He didn't say a word."

There's sure to be many a United fan who would have liked to see Mikel - who made 372 Chelsea appearances between 2006 and 2017 - line up in red rather than west London blue. However, it's fair to suggest if Ferguson can let those tensions go, there's little use in supporters hanging on after all these years.