The Sunday Mirror says Ferguson had been given the green light by United’s controversial owners, the Glazer family, to spend £30 million on France international winger Ribery.
At one point they even claimed Ribery was worth as much as Cristiano Ronaldo who had joined Madrid from United for £80 million the previous summer.
That kind of price tag was ridiculous. But at a more sensible price Ribery could yet move from Bavaria.
And in a further twist their are claims circulating in Germany that United do not only covet Ribery, they would like to recruit his attacking partner Arjen Robben as well.
Robben, 26, was on the brink of joining United six years ago until Chelsea persuaded him to head to Stamford Bridge at the last moment.