Man Utd hero Gary Neville names four clubs he would have joined if he quit Old Trafford
Press conference with Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer ahead of his side's Premier League match against Manchester City
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Former Manchester United icon Gary Neville has named the four clubs he would have joined if he had ever departed Old Trafford. The Englishman spent his entire career at the Red Devils, with 19 years in the first team under Sir Alex Ferguson.
During that time, Neville made more than 400 appearances for United and was regarded as one of the best right-backs of his generation.
He also won 20 trophies with the Red Devils, including eight Premier League titles and two Champions Leagues.
He never came close to leaving Old Trafford, having quickly become a stalwart at right-back upon his graduation from United’s academy.
The former England international became the Red Devils’ captain in 2005, holding the position until his retirement in 2011.
But if he were to have left United while he was playing, Neville has now stated only four clubs would have been considered.
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Perhaps surprisingly, Arsenal would have been Neville’s first choice, despite the Gunners being United’s biggest rivals for a significant part of the right-back’s career.
Aston Villa and Newcastle have also been named as potential destinations by Neville, with the former United captain looking for a “proper club”.
Only one European team would have been able to convince him to leave Manchester – Bundesliga giants Bayern Munich.
As well as Bayern, Neville also admitted to ‘admiring’ Serie A side Juventus, but the German team’s meticulous strategy put them above the Italians.
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“If you’d said to me, in a perfect world, in my years of playing, which clubs in the Premier League have the tradition, a proper club?” Neville said in an episode of Sky Sports’ Off Script.
“Arsenal would be No 1. The tradition of Highbury, I felt they did things the right way. Also in the Premier League, I like Aston Villa and Newcastle.
“In Europe I admired Juventus and Bayern Munich. I respected them as football clubs. Bayern were meticulous in their preparation, so internationally, it would be them.”
But there are some clubs that Neville did rule out of ever having considered moving to, showing his loyalty to United.
The three teams that Neville dismissed point-blank are all major rivals of the Red Devils, with Manchester City, Liverpool and Leeds written off.
That is perhaps surprising given that City had failed to hit the heights they have now reached while Neville was a player.
“You can rule out three. I’d have never have played for [Manchester] City, Liverpool or Leeds. Not in a million years,” he added.
“I don’t feel anything bad towards the players who did that, but me personally, I couldn’t have done it. The rivalry is just too much.”
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