Updated: 16 Jun , FEW footballers have produced as many jaw-dropping moments of magic and controversy as Eric Cantona. Here's everything you need to know about the Manchester United legend who returns to Soccer Aid Eric Cantona was born in Marseille on May 24, , and began his professional football career with Auxerre.
Already an established French international, Cantona helped to fire the Yorkshire club to the final ever old First Division title, and scored the first hat-trick in the Premier League.
A move to Manchester United followed, and under the management of Alex Ferguson the Frenchman became one of the club's true icons. Red Devils fans, who affectionately referred to him as "King Eric", voted Cantona the club's greatest ever player in a poll by Inside United magazine.
As outspoken and opinionated off the pitch as he was outrageous on it, he made an attempt to gather support for a French presidential bid in The fiery Frenchman reacted in typically uncompromising fashion by kicking out at his opponent, and was shown a red card.
As he trudged off the pitch, Palace fan Matthew Simmons ran down 11 flights of stairs to hurl abuse at Cantona, who responded by launching a kung-fu-style kick into the crowd.
Cantona received an eight-month ban from football and admitted a charge of assault, receiving hours community service. What has Eric Cantona done since retiring from football?
Following his shock retirement in at the age of just 30, Cantona became an actor on screen and stage. Most notably for his British fans, he starred in 's biopic Elizabeth starring Cate Blanchett and had a major role as himself in 's Looking for Eric.
He has acted in various other French film and TV productions, donning an eye-catching and headline-making fat suit for 's The Overeater. Cantona maintained an involvment in football by becoming the captain of the French beach soccer team, which also featured his brother Joel.
What are Eric Cantona's most famous quotes? Following the kung-fu kick incident Cantona delivered a press conference to the expectant media which has gone down in folklore.
Instead of directly referring to the incident, he gave the oft-analysed assessment of: "When the seagulls follow the trawler, it is because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.