NEIL ‘RAZOR’ RUDDOCK was worried Eric Cantona was going to ‘kill him’ in his comeback fight after being banned for the infamous ‘kung fu kick’.
The Frenchman received a nine-month suspension in 1995 after launching into the crowd to kick a Crystal Palace fan in the face while the game was going on.
Cantona was known for his volatile temper as a player[/caption]
Ruddock chose to wind Cantona up in his first game back after the kung fu kick ban[/caption]
And the defender has now revealed how he wound him up during the game.
Speaking on the All to Play For podcast, he said: “He used to wear his collar up – I used to put it down.
“I carried on, and he said, ‘I’ll fight you in the tunnel’, I went ‘yeah of course you will you n**’.
“He was going to kill me after. Robbie Fowler scored and I was going ‘1-0’. It was his first game back after his Kung-Fu kick.”
He went on: “I’ve got to get into his head [Cantona’s], like Di-Canio, and then all he’ll want to do is fight me.
“So I’ve turned his collar down and he wants to fight me. I was doing it at goal kicks, Schmeichel was kicking it and I was doing it and getting out of his way.
“So the ball’s dead, and I’ve done it. He’s swung for me, and as I’ve turned round he’s toe-punted me…. I do it again, and do it again.”
The match ended 2-2 as a 70th minute penalty from Cantona rescued a point for Sir Alex Ferguson‘s side.
And Ruddock explained how after the match things nearly came to blows in the tunnel… before Liverpool keeper David James stepped in.
He said: “So I’m striding to the half-way line and he’s saying, ‘come on fat boy’, and I get to the half-way line, and I’m getting out of my head thinking, ‘f**k me, he is big’.
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“David James ripped his gloves off, and Cantona went and legged it up the tunnel.”
Cantona enjoyed a sensational spell at Old Trafford between 1992 and 1997, arriving from Leeds for £1.6million.
He would go on to score 82 goals in 185 appearances for the Red Devils, winning four Premier League titles and two FA Cups in the process.