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5 of the best Manchester United defenders in the Premier League era

Sam Curran
Top 5 / Top 10
9.03K   //    12 Mar 2018, 22:52 IST

Manchester United v Chelsea - FA Cup Sixth Round
Sir Alex signed a lot of classy defenders during his time at Manchester United

When someone thinks of United in the modern era, they immediately think of free-flowing, attacking football.

This is certainly something which was commonplace during Sir Alex Ferguson's time.

Perhaps the greatest example of this is the 5-3 win vs Tottenham in 2001, which United fans will have fond memories of. Despite being 3-0 down at half-time, United somehow roared back to win the game 5-3, with the scoring capped off with an exquisite David Beckham strike.

Sir Alex's final season as manager (2012/13), was characterized by a number of high scoring games, with United often being 1 or 2 goals down before roaring back to win through the sheer force of the attacking prowess they possessed at the time (Robin Van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Javier Hernandez etc.).

However, for all the great attacking traditions of the club, many of the team's title wins have been based on a rock-solid defence, bolstered with an exceptional goalkeeper or two (Peter Schmeichel, Edwin Van Der Sar, David De Gea, maybe not Massimo Taibi).

The Red Devils' attack may have received most of the plaudits in years gone by but the defence deserves ample recognition as well.

So here is a look of 5 top defenders to have played for Manchester United in the Premier League era:

#5 Gary Neville (1992-2011)

Manchester United v Chelsea - Premier League
Neville was a true United player who gave everything for the club

In terms of pure footballing skill, Neville may not have been one of the flair players, but he is the very definition of the word 'club legend'.


Part of the legendary 'Class of 92' crop, he always gave his all in a United shirt and he had a real passion for the club, even though he occasionally got into trouble for it!

That just endeared him further to the fans, who regarded him as one of their own. Seeing as Neville hailed from Bury, that is probably true.

In his early career, he was more of an attacking full-back, forming a great partnership with David Beckham for club and country. Towards the end of his career, his abilities declined, hence his self-enforced decision to retire in 2011.

Nonetheless, that should not detract from an illustrious career at the club, where he won every single trophy possible at club level.

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Sam Curran
Huge Manchester United fan hoping the club will return to their former glory. I write a variety of articles about football including historical articles, my take on current football issues and lists (i.e. 5 players who regretted leaving Manchester United).
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