How many different clubs did Eric Cantona play for?
Sadly, Eric Cantona will always be best remembered for launching a kung-fu kick at Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons, moments after being sent off at Selhurst Park in January, 1995, which earned him an eight-month ban from the game. Nevertheless, despite a chequered disciplinary record, on and off the field, Cantona was a sublime footballing talent. He retired from professional football, aged just 30, at the end of the 1996/97 season and was voted ‘Player of the Century’ by Manchester United supporters four years later.
Before settling at Old Trafford, where he spent five years, Cantona led an itinerant existence, thanks in no small part to his volatile temperament. He began his professional career with AJ Auxerre, under the legendary Guy Roux, in 1983, before joining his hometown club, Olympique de Marseille, in 1988. However, the following January, Cantona reacted badly to being subsituted during a friendly match against Torpedo Moscow, throwing his shirt at manager Gérard Gili and subsequently absconding without permission. Consequently, he spent three turbulent, but not entirely unsuccessful, loan spells at Bordeaux, Montpellier HSC and Nîmes.
Cantona was persuaded by French national team manager Michel Platini to try English football and, in 1992, after training briefly with Sheffield Wednesday, signed for Leeds United. He won the final First Division title with Leeds and, following his controversial transfer to Manchester United – his seventh club all told, not including Sheffield Wednesday – the following November, helped the Red Devils to win the newly-inaugurated Premier League.