Sunderland defender Wes Brown has revealed he left Manchester United after being told his first-team opportunities would be limited.
The emergence of twins Fabio and Rafael Da Silva restricted him to just 15 outings last season, and the arrival of Phil Jones added to competition.
"I spoke to Sir Alex Ferguson," Brown told BBC Newcastle.
"I decided it was probably for the best that I moved as it didn't look like I would be playing much this season."
"It has been a lot easier with John coming here," Brown added.
"I knew some of the other lads here and Danny Welbeck was here last season. They told me what a great club it was."
"I also spoke to [former Sunderland and United player] Dwight Yorke as well and since I have been here it has lived up to what everyone said."
Joining Sunderland reunited the Manchester-born centre-half with a familiar face from his youth team days at Old Trafford in the shape of boss Steve Bruce.
"A few clubs came in for me and I spoke to Steve," Brown continued.
"He is someone I have known for a long time as well and the way he wanted to take the club forward impressed me as well."
"I also like the players he was wanting to bring in and thought this was the right move for my future.
"Other clubs were offering similar deals and it would have been easier for me to stay in the North West but what Steve said helped me make up my mind."
The 31-year-old former England international made his United debut in 1998 and went on to make 361 appearances.