Redcafe's favourite Manchester United players

nokillingmoths

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It's Cantona, obviously
I think it might be scholes. It'll be very close. Scholes and cantona were top two the most when people were making top tens but i thought it could have been scholes edging it. Between those two and not even close to third.
 

glazed

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I think it might be scholes. It'll be very close. Scholes and cantona were top two the most when people were making top tens but i thought it could have been scholes edging it. Between those two and not even close to third.
True. I suppose Giggs might have got a look in once upon a time.
 

dave1956

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Being what one might call an old fart for me there is one despite the many greats I have seen grace Old Trafford and that is Duncan Edwards.
 

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Twenty-Six Points


47th Steve Coppell (39)


First Division Appearances - 320 (2)
Overall Appearances - 393 (3)
First Division Goals - 53
Overall Goals - 70
Position - Right Winger


In 1975 Manchester United had recently been relegated to the Second Division after struggling to replicate the success of the 1960s. New manager Tommy Docherty had a remit to try and turn around the fortunes of the sleeping giant and decided to sign Steve Coppell from Tranmere after a recommendation by United legend Jimmy Murphy. United offered to double the wages of the young Scouse lad and Coppell would go on to become a United legend.

Coppell would play for Manchester United for nine years. In his first year he would be eased into the squad and play nine times for United as they were promoted from the Second Division. The next year he was a fully fledged member of the United first team, slotting in as a right winger and electrifying the United fanbase with his performances. In the 1975/76 season United would finish third following their promotion from the Second Division and Coppell was a key part of that. They would also reach the FA Cup Final that season but unfortunately lose to Southampton.

The year after United would once again make the FA Cup Final and they would beat Liverpool with Coppell playing the full match. This would be the only medal during Coppell's nine year stay at the club as United struggled to reach the pinnacle of football. Throughout 1977-1981 Coppell would be a picture of consistency, representing United for 207 matches in a row, a record that holds to this day.

Sadly in 1982 Coppell was seriously injured in a match for England against Hungary. A terrible challenge shattered Coppell's knee and meant that player would never really regain his form from his early career. Although he carried on playing, his knee would never fully recover and would cause him trouble for the next few seasons. As a result of this challenge Coppell was forced to retire at the young age of 28.
 
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Twenty-Seven Points.

46. Stuart Pearson (NA)

First Division Appearances -108
Overall Appearances - 179 (1)
First Division Goals - 38
Overall Goals - 66
Position - Striker


Stuart Pearson was another one of Docherty's signings who arrived at Old Trafford once the mighty club had fallen on hard times and been relegated to the second division. Pearson arrived for an eye watering £200,000 after choosing to leave Hull City, a club he had been with since he was a schoolboy. The choice for Pearson was a hard one, especially as United only offered a £10.00 raise on the contract on the table from Hull. Nevertheless Pearson has said he was swayed by the support and atmosphere at the Manchester club and his move went to be a massive success for the player.

He arrived in 1975 and would be an ever present fixture in the side for the next four seasons, becoming an invaluable part of a successful United side. In his first season at the club he scored seventeen goals in the second division, helping United to return to the first division on the first time of asking. The next three years showed Pearson could easily make the step up to the top flight of English football, hitting double figures in each of his three seasons representing Manchester United. His most successful year came in 1977 when he hit fifteen goals in the league (a record for him at the club) and also scored the first goal in the 2-1 defeat of Liverpool in the FA Cup Final, a goal that stopped Liverpool winning the treble.

The next season would be his last at the club and unfortunately for Pearson was a season that was dominated by injuries. In the 1978/79 season he only made two appearances for the club and both of those were in the FA Cup. Following his return he was eventually moved onto West Ham and the forward who had been nicknamed Pancho would go onto have three very successful years in London before returning to Manchester United years later as a host for the club's executive fans.
 
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I'm pretty pissed off with myself as I'm pretty sure I have bundled the votes for two Pearson's together as some people might have voted for Stan Pearson. As a result I'm pretty sure this Pearson should have moved down roughly four places. Sorry to anyone who voted for Stan!
 

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Thirty Points

45. Martin Buchan (36)

First Division Appearances - 335
Overall Appearances - 456
First Division Goals - 4
Overall Goals - 4
Position - Centre Back


On the 29th February 1972 Manchester United manager Frank O'Farrell chose to smash Manchester United's transfer record by signing Scottish centre back Martin Buchan from Aberdeen for a princely £120,000. He turned down interest from Liverpool and Leeds United to sign for the Red Devils and was confident that his career south of the border would flourish.

Unfortunately it didn't quite work out that way. United's first team had deteriorated significantly and as a result three years after Buchan arrived in England the team was relegated to the second tier of English football. Buchan debated whether to move clubs after United's relegation but ultimately ended up staying and was made Manchester United's captain as the team climbed out of Division Two. He would remain United's captain for almost a decade and become probably United's most important player in the 1970s.

In 1977 Buchan would captain United in their successful pursuit of the FA Cup, leading United to a 2-1 victory at Wembley. This would mean Buchan was the first player to ever captain both a Scottish and English team to cup glory, following his Scottish Cup win with Aberdeen in 1970.

In 1983 after twelve years at the club, injuries would start to take their toll on the pacey and cultured centre back and Buchan would end his career at Manchester United. The record signing had gone on to make over 450 appearances for the club and is still to this day eighteenth on the club list for all time appearance makers. He more than justified his record transfer fee.
 
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Three 1970s players in a row then. All of them playing in that famous 1977 FA Cup Final. Pearson and Coppell were the most popular of the eleven, whereas eight of the team managed to make the list in some capacity.

Here is that team and where we voted for them.

GK Alex Stepney (87)
DF Jimmy Nicholl (Not on the list)
DF Arthur Albiston (83)
MF Sammy McIlroy (61)
DF Brian Greenhoff (Not on the list)
DF Martin Buchan (44)
MF Steve Coppell (46)
MF Jimmy Greenhoff (80)
FW Stuart Pearson (45)
FW Lou Macari (Not on the list)
MF Gordon Hill (58)
 

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Thirty-One Points


44. Lee Sharpe (45)

Premier League Appearances - 160 (33)
Overall Appearances - 213 (50)
Premier League Goals - 21
Overall Goals - 36
Position - Left Midfielder


24th September 1988 and Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson brings on seventeen Lee Sharpe for his debut against West Ham United. A few months later, first choice winger Jesper Olsen left United to return to Denmark and Sharpe was catapulted into stardom as he started to make the left wing position his own. At the end of the season the teenager had taken part in thirty appearances for Manchester United and the future looked bright for the talented Englishman.

Of course it wasn't a surprise for anyone who followed youth football in England at the time. United had paid £200,000 for the player to secure his services from Torquay a few months earlier. Over the next few seasons, Ferguson rotated Sharpe with the disappointing Ralph Milne and new singing Danny Wallace before he made the position his own in 1990. He scored a hat trick against Arsenal in the League Cup Fourth round and this would help Sharpe claim young footballer of the year in 1991. A firm favourite of the Old Trafford faithful, Sharpe had the world at his feet and made his England debut at just nineteen years of age.

Sharpe had arrived on the scene just as football was exploding in popularity and Sharpe was one of the most popular 'Spice Boys' of the 1990s. He was as likely to be featured on the front pages of the papers as the back and Sharpe revelled in the drinking culture at Manchester United. Unfortunately Sir Alex Ferguson was beginning to demand more of his players and Sharpe struggled to adapt to his new found popularity. At age twenty-two Sharpe would make his last appearance for England and a few years later his United career would be over.

Before he left Sharpe played his part in three Manchester United Premier League wins. He played twenty-seven times for the Red Devils in the 1992 title win, having to move around the team to accommodate the new young sensation Ryan Giggs. Sharpe would have a resurgence in the 1993/94 season and score eleven league goals, the most he would ever score for Manchester United in a single season. However by the end of 1996 Sharpe had fallen down the pecking order and departed United for rivals Leeds United in the prime of his career. Injuries and off the field problems would mean Sharpe never progressed as much as many of his early fans would have hoped, nevertheless his form as a youngster means he's still a memorable figure at United.
 
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Thirty Two Points each

42. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (NA)

Premier League Appearances - 28 (5)
Overall Appearances - 43 (10)
Premier League Goals - 17
Overall Goals - 29
Position - Striker


"I wasn't always sure that I would play in England, but when I took the decision that I would, I was very clear in my mind that there was only one team I would play for.

United." - Zlatan Ibrahimovic

In 2016 Ibrahimovic had just completed his time in Paris having established himself as the top scorer in the club's history. The striker was one of the most decorated players in football, having won eleven divisions in his storied career. There was still one more league for Zlatan to conquer however and as such the Swedish legend signed for Manchester United.

There were question marks over his signing at the time as the player was already entering his mid thirties, people were unsure whether he would adapt to the Premier League. Zlatan started answering those critics immediately, scoring the winner in the 2016 Charity Shield. A few weeks later Zlatan scored on his League debut, a fantastic long range effort against Burnley opening his account in the Premier League.

Throughout the year Zlatan would just keep scoring. Highlights include a hat-trick in United's Europa League game against St. Etienne, putting United on the way to capturing the Europe League that season. He would score the Premier League's 25,000th goal with a double against Swansea and go on to score goals against United's rivals Liverpool and finish the season with an incredible seventeen goals in his first season. Perhaps the biggest moment was Zlatan's double in the League Cup Final against Southampton, helping the club win another major trophy.

Unfortunately Zlatan's time at United was effectively ended after ligament damage sustained in his right knee in a Europa League match against Anderlecht. Although he would later return, he would not hit the heights of his first season and eventually left to go and conquer America. The Swedish hero made a massive impression on United fans during his brief stay and he definitely shut up some of his more vocal critics.
 
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42. Anthony Martial (50)

Premier League Appearances - 80 (27)
Overall Appearances - 120 (45)
Premier League Goals - 33
Overall Goals - 47
Position - Striker


Last time I had compiled this list, Anthony Martial had just about made it on after a successful first season at Manchester United. The world's most expensive teenager had arrived for around £40 million which soon could rise to over £50 million depending on Martial's success during his stay in Manchester. This time around he's deep into his fourth year at the club and has started to establish himself as a mainstay in the first team. His time at the club hasn't always been easygoing, but the future is very bright for the young Frenchmen.

Martial announced his arrival at the club with a superb goal against Liverpool after coming off the bench shortly after his deadline day signing. It would be the first of seventeen goals that season that kickstarted his United career. To this day he has not matched this total at the club. He was a key figure in United's FA Cup victory, the first trophy the club had won since Ferguson's retirement. Martial got a goal and an assist against Everton in the Semi-Final and sent United through to play Crystal Palace in the final. Due to his exploits during this season, Martial was given the prestigious title of 'Golden Boy', he had been dubbed the world's most talented teenager.

Under new manager Jose Mourinho, Anthony Martial struggled to maintain a first team spot and was in and out of the team. At the end of the season Martial forced himself back into contention and was instrumental in United winning the League Cup, a month later he came off the bench as United clinched their first ever Europa League trophy.

Martial has looked like properly kicking on at numerous times during his stay, this year he had a fantastic November that saw him score in five Premier League games in a row and claim the Player of the Month award. Martial recently put an end to speculation linking his future away from the club by signing a new five year deal and United will be hoping he fulfils his potential in these years.
 
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Thirty Six Points each

40. Juan Mata (48)

Premier League Appearances - 129 (28)
Overall Appearances - 174 (39)
Premier League Goals - 32
Overall Goals - 44
Position - Central Attacking Midfielder/Winger


On the 24th January 2014, newly appointed Manchester United manager David Moyes thought he had found the answer to his problems. Struggling to match up to Ferguson's impressive record over the last three decades, Moyes turned to fellow Premier League team Chelsea to sign their impressive midfielder Juan Mata. The Spaniard had been at Chelsea for three years and was looking for a fresh challenge. Five years later, Mata has remained at the club, having played under five managers since then. He is the only player to have scored while playing for Moyes/Giggs/LVG/Mourinho and Solskjaer and his technical ability has meant he has never been out of the first team for too long.

His first season had started well, with Mata making an immediate impact gathering assists and goals in his first few run outs for the club. However it would be under Louis Van Gaal that Mata would make the biggest impact, scoring an impressive twenty goals during the Dutchman's tenure at Old Trafford. The highlight of Mata's performances under LVG came in March 2015 when he scored two scintillating goals to give United the victory over their arch nemesis. The next season saw Mata score the first goal in the FA Cup Final to equalise against Crystal Palace to put United on the way to lifting their first major trophy since Ferguson's retirement.

Mata would play under the manager who sold him at Chelsea when Mourinho arrived at Old Trafford in 2016. He quickly squashed any rumours of a fallout between his old boss and would become a regular in the first team under Mourinho, scoring a number of important goals as United lifted the Europa League/League Cup double in 2017. This season he score a fantastic goal to equalise for United against Juventus in the Champions League and has played in numerous big wins.

You can't mention Juan Mata without bringing to attention his fantastic charity work. He helped to launch the global charity 'Common Goal' which asks footballers to donate just 1% of their total earnings to worthy causes. He has raised millions for this charity and convinced plenty of footballers to join him in his charity endeavours. A true gentleman, fantastically articulate and generous as well, Mata embodies every trait you would want from a modern footballer.
 
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40. Paul McGrath (30)


First Division Appearances - 159 (4)
Overall Appearances - 192 (7)
First Division Goals - 12
Overall Goals - 16
Position - Centre Back


Paul McGrath had a tough start to his life. Originally put into foster care, he was sent away from his foster parents aged just five years old after they claimed they could not control the toddler. What followed was a series of orphanages in Dublin, with McGrath being shoved around the system. Throughout McGrath's life he would struggle with depression and alcoholism. McGrath would find an escape from these demons with his natural footballing ability. His career started in the lower leagues of Irish football, before McGrath began to be noticed by several footballing scouts.

In 1982 Manchester United manager Ron Atkinson signed Republic of Ireland defender Paul McGrath from the Irish side St. Patrick's Athletic. The defender would go on to be a rock at the heart of Manchester United's defence for seven years. Sir Alex Ferguson's arrival heralded the end of McGrath's career at the Manchester club, as the Scottish manager grew weary of McGrath's off the field antics. Nevertheless McGrath remains a legend at Old Trafford.

McGrath had considerable troubles with his knees, which meant at Old Trafford he was constantly battling injury. Despite this he was a fantastic reader of the game and would wear his heart on his sleeve diving into tough tackles. McGrath epitomised cool, which led one journalist to comment "Paul McGrath played football as though he was wearing a silk smoking jacket with a crystal glass in his hand."

McGrath's only honour for Manchester United came in the 1984/85 season, when Manchester United were successful in the FA Cup. He was voted Man Of The Match in the final as Manchester United beat Everton 1-0. It is a shame his best years didn't come at a more fruitful time for the club as a player with his natural ability deserved to win more. As Alex Ferguson came into power at Old Trafford he became increasingly more and more frustrated with McGrath's off the field behaviour, including a well documented drinking problem. This increasingly tumultuous relationship led to McGrath's departure in February 1989. Despite this his style of play and longevity make him a firm favourite at Manchester United.
 
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Joint 37th
(Three Players)
Thirty Six Points each

37. Nani (39)

Premier League Appearances - 111 (16)
Overall Appearances - 178 (52)
Premier League Goals - 26
Overall Goals - 41
Position - Winger


United signalled their intent to push for domination of European football in the summer of 2007 when they announced the stunning signing of Brazillian teenager Anderson and Portuguese winger Nani on the same day. Nani arrived at twenty years old having made his name at Sporting CP and having already made his debut for Portugal. Expectations around Old Trafford were high and for the next seven seasons Nani was a consistent figure in a period of massive success for Manchester United.

After a slow start to the season, Nani grabbed United's first win of the campaign with a long range effort that flew into the top corner against Tottenham at Old Trafford. That was the first of four goals that year, but his most important moment in front of goal would come on the 21st May in Moscow when Nani would step up to take United's crucial fifth penalty in the Champions League Final. A penalty that would help secure United's third Champions League win. Not a bad way to end Nani's first season at the club.

Over the next few seasons Nani would find himself in and out of the first team, but the expectations rose considerably after the departure of fellow winger Cristiano Ronaldo in the summer of 2008. Nani was starting to become a fixture in the team until the 2010/2011 season and this was where he really started to fulfil his early potential. After an impressive ten goals across all competitions, Nani was voted United's player of the season and voted in the PFA Team of the Season as United lifted the Premier League trophy.

Before Nani's eventual departure from the club under David Moyes' reign, he would go on to make around 225 appearances for the team and four titles and a Champions League. Often criticised for his lack of end product and inconsistent form, it is only when you look back on Nani's time at United when you realise how influential he was during a period of constant success at the club. A great player who deserves his place on the list.
 
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IrishMcD

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How much would a fit Paul McGrath in his prime be worth in today’s market? His display against Italy in Giants Stadium during USA ‘94 is still one of the best individual displays I’ve ever seen! He even managed to fool us into thinking Phil Babb was going to be a great when he first lined up beside him!
 
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37. Marcus Rashford (NA)

Premier League Appearances - 64 (40)
Overall Appearances - 102 (59)
Premier League Goals - 26
Overall Goals - 44
Position - Striker


Still only twenty one years of age, Marcus Rashford enters this list having been a regular at Old Trafford for four years. Born in bred in Wythenshawe Manchester, Rashford's rise to regular for both club and country has been meteoric. Already Rashford has scored game winners against a variety of United's most hated rivals, played his part in numerous cup finals and has already started to fill his trophy cabinet. He's got a very bright future.

It all started in rather innocuous fashion in the Europa League against FC Midtjylland. Trailing 2-1 after a disastrous first leg, United manager Louis Van Gaal had a selection headache. Wayne Rooney was injured. Chicarito had just been sold. James Wilson wasn't fit for selection and Anthony Martial was unable to play after getting injured in the warm-up. Up step youngster Marcus Rashford, he'd already been at the club for a decade but not much was known about the pacey striker. Rashford went onto score a brace that day and Old Trafford belted out the name of their new hero. Even after that game, few could have predicted what would come next.

After the relatively easy game against Midtjylland, United's next test was Arsenal at Old Trafford. Rashford was once again thrown into the deep end and passed this test with flying colours. Two goals and an assist on his premier league debut meant Arsenal left Manchester without any points. Less than a month later Rashford scored the only goal in the game against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium. Five months after making his debut he finished the season with eight important goals and lifted the FA Cup trophy.

The next year Rashford would make fifty-three appearances for United across all competitions in a variety of positions. New United manager Jose Mourinho saw fit to bed in Rashford on either wing as well as his preferred position upfront. He scored eleven goals across all competitions and took part in the Europa and League Cup Finals, winning both games. In just two seasons Rashford had taken part in 75 games for United and collected three major trophies.

From there Rashford's game has gone from strength to strength. His skill and pace on the ball terrify defenders just as much as his workrate and technical ability. The highlight of the current season came recently as Rashford bagged an injury time winner against PSG to set up a mouth watering tie against Barcelona in the Champions League quarter final.

When I do this list again in three years, I am hoping there are numerous more paragraphs to write about Manchester United's most promising youngster. Although he has been written off numerous times over the last four years, it seems Rashford excels in proving people wrong and has a promising future ahead of him.
 
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anant

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Our players now.

Approaching Top 30...
+ Pogba and Herrera Top 30??
+ :eek: Ashley Young?! Lukaku?! white text
+ De Gea for sure, bet he's in top 20.
Doubt Rom and Young are finishing above Rashy. Think it's last time's top 29, Carrick, Whiteside, Herrera,Chicharito, RVP, Rafael and Pogba remaining.

Edit: FFS. White text
 
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37.. Dwight Yorke (44)

Premier League Appearances - 80 (16)
Overall Appearances - 120 (32)
Premier League Goals - 48
Overall Goals - 66
Position - Striker


Dwight signed for Manchester United at the start of the legendary 1998/1999 season and would spend four years in total at the club. Yorke joined from fellow premier league team Aston Villa, upsetting their fans with his behaviour as he pushed through a move to Manchester United. However, Yorke explained his actions in a press conference with his new club, stating "I hope I can win some silverware at United." He had no idea what was to come.

The treble winning season will go down as the best in our club's illustrious history and Yorke was a massive contributor that season, becoming our top scorer in the league as well as scoring important goals in the quarter and semi finals against Inter Milan and Juventus respectively. He would score 29 goals across that first season at United and be voted the Premier League Player of the Season. His first year alone would make him a legend at many clubs, but more success would follow.

He would also be the top scorer in the premier league the next season scoring an impressive 20 league goals as United retained the Premier League title. His partnership with fellow striker Andy Cole was fantastic and both contributed massively to some amazing football.

In the 2000/2001 season Yorke found himself behind RVN in what was thought to be Ferguson's last year at the club. Ferguson had become irate at Yorke's "playboy" behaviour, and it came to a head as Yorke turned up a day late for preseason after going out for a "wild night" in his native country Trinidad and Tobago. His time in the first team dwindled and at the start of the 2002/2003 season he moved on to Blackburn to eventually reunite with Cole. It's a shame his lifestyle ended his United career prematurely. Nevertheless he left Old Trafford with three Premier League titles and an FA Cup.
 
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36th Place
Thirty Eight Points

36. Rafael (50)


Premier League Appearances - 96 (13)
Overall Appearances - 150 (20)
Premier League Goals - 5
Overall Goals - 5
Position - Right Back


Despite never playing for their first club Fluminense, twins Rafael and Fabio Da Silva were signed for Manchester United in February 2007 when the brothers were just seventeen years old. The pair would have to wait till their eighteenth birthday until they could officially travel tor Manchester United and arrived with a big reputation, especially after Fabio had impressed at the under 17 world cup.

Rafael was a converted winger who had been signed as a right back and he soon found opportunities opening up to him. He made his debut in the first game of the 2008/2009 Premier League season and would go onto represent United over 150 times over the next seven years. His early performances highlighted the pace and trickery of the young Brazillian, as well as his ability to get stuck in and leave a mark on any opposition players. He would lift the Premier League in his first season at the club, making an impressive twenty eight appearances across all competitions.

His stature grew over the following seasons and he became a reliable member of Sir Alex Ferguson's all conquering United team. He would overtake veterans Gary Neville and Wes Brown in the pecking order and go onto become a beloved full back at United, his attacking play often drawing more plaudits than his defensive positioning. However, he matured as a player throughout his time at the club and had fantastic performances against giants of the game such as Ribery in a memorable Champions League tie at Old Trafford.

Nothing sums up Rafael's desire and heart more than the infamous picture of him confronting Carlos Tevez playing in the sky blue of Manchester City. Rafael seemed to personify the fanbase on the pitch, his attacking style and fiery temperament made him an Old Trafford favourite.
 
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Joint 34th
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Thirty Nine Points each.

34. Anderson (56)

Premier League Appearances - 70 (35)
Overall Appearances - 128 (53)
Premier League Goals - 5
Overall Goals - 9
Position - Centre Midfield


The best player at the Under-17 World Cup in 2005, Anderson signed for Manchester United from Porto as a teenager and was granted a work permit for the "exceptional talent he will bring to the Premier League”. He is now thirty years of age and currently struggling to maintain fitness in the Turkish Second Division for his club Adana Demirspor. In between all of this he became a bit of a legend at Manchester United.

In his first year at the club the hype surrounding Anderson was massive and on the first of September 2007 he appeared for the first time against Sunderland. He lasted 45 minutes before he was hauled off. Anderson was known as an attacking midfielder but Ferguson chose to utilise the player in a different way, moving him further down the pitch. During the first season at the club Anderson would play 35 times, but would fail to find the net. However he scored when it mattered the most, coming off the bench in injury time of the extra time in the Final of the Champions League and converting a penalty in a penalty shoot out. This penalty meant Anderson finished his first season in the game with a European and domestic trophy, as United lifted the Premier League title.

The next year he would convert another penalty in the League Cup Final against Tottenham Hotspur that would lead to another trophy. He was named Golden Boy (an award for the best teenager in the world) and would lift another Premier League trophy. At his best Anderson had a delicious eye for a pass and could dominate the midfield. In this season he would stand out in games against title rivals Arsenal and would end up with his own chant about his ability to dominate against fellow midfielder Cesc Fabregas. That chant can still be heard today sung at Old Trafford or from our passionate away fans.

Anderson's career was curtailed by injuries, including a cruciate ligament injury during his third year at the club. He would be injured again in a serious car crash and worryingly couldn't seem to maintain fitness for a long period of time. He would be in and out of the team throughout his stay at Old Trafford, staying for eight seasons but only averaging roughly twenty games a season during his time. He left United with four premier league titles and a Champions League medal, but his latter years at the club were plagued with rumours about a lack of commitment to the club. He would return to his native Brazil in 2015, United fans overall happy with his contribution to some very successful years, but wishing he had fulfilled his full early potential.
 
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34. Javier Hernandez (34)


Premier League Appearances - 49 (54)
Overall Appearances - 85 (72)
Premier League Goals - 37
Overall Goals - 59
Position - Striker


Manchester United announced they were signing Javier Hernandez on April 08th 2010 (pending a work permit) and at the time the fanbase was somewhat perplexed as in an age where players from foreign leagues were constantly hyped, the player nicknamed 'Chicharito' was a relative unknown.
Hernandez on the other hand was feeling a lot happier. "I feel like I am living a dream," Hernandez told MUTV. "All the impressions I have of the club are good and Sir Alex Ferguson is a great person, maybe the best coach in the world." Indeed while the young striker had previously got unnoticed for a large proportion of his early career, the Manchester United scouting network had found something in the player that would push him on to stardom. Moving from his team Chivas, Chicharito originally played against Manchester United in a friendly (and scored against us) before making his Manchester United appearance in the second half. He hardly stopped scoring after that. His competitive debut was in the Charity Shield where he scored against Chelsea and he continued the 2010/2011 season in fine form scoring 20 goals in 27 full games. Lightning pace, deadly accuracy and the ability to find space meant Chicharito was immediately a fan favourite, from humble beginnings we had found an incredibly talented poacher. He finished his debut season as Fans Player of the year.

He continued his fine goalscoring form for the next two seasons, scoring ten premier league goals in both seasons despite often starting off the bench. His goalscoring form led him to two premier league titles at Old Trafford and he scored some vital goals particularly in Sir Alex Ferguson's final year, including a last minute winner against Newcastle in a 4-3 victory and a winner against Chelsea away from home. Chicharito has the honour of scoring the last ever goal under Alex Ferguson's regime, netting a goal in a 5-5 draw with West Brom away from home.

His last three seasons at the club were unfortunately not as successful as the player dropped down the pecking order, was loaned out and eventually sold to Bayern Leverkusen. To this day his great scoring record and fantastic attitude means he is a firm favourite at Old Trafford.
 
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Wumminator

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33. Norman Whiteside (32)

First Division Appearances - 193 (13)
Overall Appearances - 256 (18)
First Division Goals - 47
Overall Goals - 67
Position - Midfield/Striker


Coming in at thirty second place for the second time on this list, Whiteside has one of the more varied careers out of any players on the list. First team player at 16. Retired aged 26. Norman Whiteside had a tumultuous footballing career filled with highs and lows, but definitely did enough to be remembered as a Manchester United legend.

As Ron Atkinson's first season of Manchester United come to an end Norman Whiteside was handed his début at just 16 years of age. He became United's youngest player since the legendary Duncan Edwards. His second appearance came against Stoke in 2-0 win in which he scored, entering the record books as Manchester United's youngest scorer aged just 17 years and eight days old. The following season his impressive performances at the World Cup saw him become a first team regular and he missed only three games that season, taking part in 57 out of Manchester United's 60 games. Part of the reason for such a large number of games was United's impressive cup performances, and Whiteside scored in both the FA Cup and League Cup final, helping United to a FA Cup trophy in a 4-0 win over Brighton (He is still the youngest player to score in either an FA Cup or League Cup final).

He would repeat his cup heroics in subsequent seasons, scoring in the 1985 Cup Final against Everton, a goal that would win him the goal of the season award. The two FA Cup trophies were to be his only medals throughout his seven years at Manchester United and injuries really started to hamper his footballing career. As Sir Alex Ferguson took over in 1986 Whiteside found his first team opportunities limited by recurring injuries, including a spell in which he missed almost a year in the 1987/88 season. Ferguson became tired of his injuries and sold the player to Everton, where once again he was incapable of recovering from his knee injuries and retired age 26. He had played for almost a decade with no cartilage in his right knee to absorb the impact felt in a football match. To this day he claims he has never kicked a football again. Nevertheless Whiteside was held in great esteem by the Manchester United faithful and he did well enough to earn a high space on this list.
 
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Wumminator

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Into the top third of the list now. Will provide another three updates tomorrow.

Edit: Just one more 'split' place now as well. So that's also a positive.
 

Josh 76

Full Member
Joined
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Messages
1,793
32nd Place
41 Points

32. Norman Whiteside (32)

First Division Appearances - 193 (13)
Overall Appearances - 256 (18)
First Division Goals - 47
Overall Goals - 67
Position - Midfield/Striker


Coming in at thirty second place for the second time on this list, Whiteside has one of the more varied careers out of any players on the list. First team player at 16. Retired aged 26. Norman Whiteside had a tumultuous footballing career filled with highs and lows, but definitely did enough to be remembered as a Manchester United legend.

As Ron Atkinson's first season of Manchester United come to an end Norman Whiteside was handed his début at just 16 years of age. He became United's youngest player since the legendary Duncan Edwards. His second appearance came against Stoke in 2-0 win in which he scored, entering the record books as Manchester United's youngest scorer aged just 17 years and eight days old. The following season his impressive performances at the World Cup saw him become a first team regular and he missed only three games that season, taking part in 57 out of Manchester United's 60 games. Part of the reason for such a large number of games was United's impressive cup performances, and Whiteside scored in both the FA Cup and League Cup final, helping United to a FA Cup trophy in a 4-0 win over Brighton (He is still the youngest player to score in either an FA Cup or League Cup final).

He would repeat his cup heroics in subsequent seasons, scoring in the 1985 Cup Final against Everton, a goal that would win him the goal of the season award. The two FA Cup trophies were to be his only medals throughout his seven years at Manchester United and injuries really started to hamper his footballing career. As Sir Alex Ferguson took over in 1986 Whiteside found his first team opportunities limited by recurring injuries, including a spell in which he missed almost a year in the 1987/88 season. Ferguson became tired of his injuries and sold the player to Everton, where once again he was incapable of recovering from his knee injuries and retired age 26. He had played for almost a decade with no cartilage in his right knee to absorb the impact felt in a football match. To this day he claims he has never kicked a football again. Nevertheless Whiteside was held in great esteem by the Manchester United faithful and he did well enough to earn a high space on this list.
"Norman Whiteside has done it again"
1985 cup final commentary. Love the man!
 

Josh 76

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There’s something amazing about being able to chill and watch YouTube with him sometimes after a long night. Love talking about United with him
Another Norman moment where the hairs on the back of the neck stand up
 
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Wumminator

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32. Darren Fletcher (NA)

Premier League Appearances - 179 (44)
Overall Appearances - 266 (76)
Premier League Goals - 18
Overall Goals - 24
Position - Centre Midfield


Joining Manchester United age 11 as a right winger, Darren Fletcher was seen as one of United's most promising youth players. Originally featuring in youth teams as a skilful wide-man, Fletcher was going to be United's youngest ever player if a contract dispute didn't prohibit him playing for the first team in May 2000. Refusing to be perturbed, Fletcher would have to wait roughly three seasons for his first team debut in a Champions League match against Basel at Old Trafford. It would be the start of a thirteen year career at the club as a first team player.

He would break through and take part in thirty five matches in the 2003/2004 season, with the highlight coming when Fletcher played eighty-four minutes in the FA Cup Final triumph over Milwall. Fletcher would have to wait till the following season to score his first goal for the club in which he scored against Middlesbrough in a routine 2-0 win. This would be the gateway for Fletcher to establish himself as a first team player at Old Trafford and he would go onto make almost 350 appearances before he was moved on to West Bromich Albion in 2015.

Before he was moved on Fletcher was instrumental in United's success. He was a key player in the 2007/08 season, taking part in twenty four games, despite being an unused substitute in the Champions League Final. The following year he would be suspended for the Final game against Barcelona at Wembley, and it was a tribute to the Scottish midfielder that so many players commented on how his absence would impact United.

After establishing himself as a first team player, the world of football was shocked in December 2011 when Fletcher announced he was taking an extended break from football due to health reasons. At this point he had made almost 200 appearances for United and was considered a key member of the first team squad. After ten months he would return for United in Champions League action against Galatasary, but despite his relatively young age, he would never recapture the form that originally made him a United first team player. After four years struggling with injuries, United chose to sell the player to West Brom in 2015.

During his time at United, Fletcher picked up five Premier Leagues, an FA Cup trophy and the Champions League. He had evolved from an unfancied Scottish youth player to an important part of United's success throughout the decade starting in 2010. It is a shame Fletcher didn't continue his good run as there is a chance he would have been remembered as an all time great. As it is, United fans are extremely grateful for the memories given by Darren Fletcher.
 
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