Sir Alex Ferguson was asked to pick his all-time Manchester United XI and did not hesitate to reveal who the first name on his team sheet would be.
The legendary Scotsman spent 23 years at Old Trafford, winning an incredible 39 trophies, including 13 Premier League titles and two Champions Leagues.
Ferguson’s time at United saw him oversee a slew of exceptional players, from Eric Cantona and Roy Keane through Ryan Giggs, Wayne Rooney, and Cristiano Ronaldo. When asked to name his finest United team, the Red Devils’ manager confessed that it was an “impossible” task due to the abundance of skill in both attack and midfield.
“People ask you: ‘Who is your best Man United team?’ and it’s impossible,” he told the Sunday World. “It is impossible. You look at the strikers I had, going back to [Brian] McClair, [Mark] Hughes, [Andy] Cole, Cantona, [Ruud] van Nistelrooy, [Louis] Saha, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, [Dwight] Yorke, Teddy Sheringham.”
“Then to the present players — Wayne Rooney, [Robin] van Persie, Chicharito [Javier Hernandez]. How do you pick out of that? Cantona and somebody else maybe? The midfield was probably a bit easier because you have [Roy] Keane, [Bryan] Robson and Scholes — they were fantastic players — and [David] Beckham, Ronaldo and [Ryan] Giggs.”
Ferguson did not make any changes to his defense, although, in his autobiography, he stated that former United left-back Denis Irwin would be the most likely to earn a spot in his squad.
“Honestly, I would say Denis Irwin would be the one certainty to get in the team. I called him an eight out of 10,” Ferguson wrote. “At Highbury in one game, he had a bad pass back in the last minute and [Dennis] Bergkamp came in and scored. After the game, the press said: ‘You must be disappointed in that pass back.’ I said: ‘Well, one mistake in 10 years isn’t bad.’ He was an unbelievable player.”