Man Utd hero Jaap Stam: How Sir Alex sold me
After the release of his autobiography in 2001, including claims that United had made an illegal approach for him, United moved quickly to ditch their defensive kingpin to Lazio for £16.5million.
Now Stam has revealed the details of his D-day with United and boss Sir Alex Ferguson. Stam, 40, told the Sunday Mirror: "I soon realised the club wanted to get rid of me. They also needed the money. Very soon the book became an issue again.
"It led to a conflict between me and the manager.
"One morning I told him what I thought and left the training ground on the spot. On the way home I received a phone call in my car from Fergie's secretary. She said that he wanted to speak to me. He came on the phone straightaway.
"Ferguson said: 'Where are you?' "I said: 'Close to my house, at a petrol station.' Ferguson said: 'Wait there!' "He jumped in his car and came straight to me.
"At the petrol station he parked his car and got in with me.
"He told me that I had to be transferred. Then he said: 'Will you please move to Lazio quickly?'
"I agreed to do it. Right there and then. One quick conversation in my car at a petrol station in Manchester was enough for me to leave that big club. When I think about it now, and I have never talked about it before, I find it unbelievable
"I let that, as a player, happen to me.''