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Fergie's best XI: The forwards

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Dan Walker | 11:51 UK time, Thursday, 26 May 2011

Saturday's mouth-watering Champions League final between Manchester United and Barcelona is only a couple of days away.

Ahead of the game at Wembley, we've asked Football Focus pundits Mark Lawrenson and Lee Dixon to pick Sir Alex Ferguson's best-ever United side.

They've debated the defence and midfield. Now it's the forward line.

So who did they select? Well, they could have gone for Ruud van Nistelrooy, Dwight Yorke, Andy Cole, Teddy Sheringham or Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

But Lawro and Dixon both opted for Eric Cantona and Wayne Rooney. The right choice?

Watch the video below to find out why they went for the mercurial Frenchman and the talented Englishman. And don't forget, we want your opinions and comments, too.

In order to see this content you need to have both Javascript enabled and Flash installed. Visit BBC Webwise for full instructions. If you're reading via RSS, you'll need to visit the blog to access this content.

Lawro's best Ferguson XI: Schmeichel; Irwin, Bruce, Pallister, Evra; Ronaldo, Keane, Scholes, Giggs; Cantona, Rooney.

Dixon's best Ferguson XI: Schmeichel; G Neville, Ferdinand, Vidic, Irwin; Ronaldo, Keane, Scholes, Giggs; Cantona, Rooney.

Thanks for all your comments this season. See you in a few weeks - from Salford...

Comments

Page 1 of 2

  • Comment number 1.

    Mark Lawrenson & Lee Dixon's choices almost make me long for Andy Townsend and the Tactics Truck...

  • Comment number 2.

    When I first heard they were doing this I thought it would be interesting...but the choices are so obvious that it's anything but! It would be nice to see this repeated for other top teams...though with Chelsea only ever having one good squad (Jose) and Arsenal's invincibles, I think it would be fairly simple for those two as well.

  • Comment number 3.

    Im a man utd fan, and i think this best 11 thing is nonsense

  • Comment number 4.

    I think they are wrong :

    GK : Schemeichel
    LB : Evra
    CB : Ferdinand
    CB : Pallister
    RB : Neville.G
    RM : Beckham
    CM : Keane
    CM : Ince
    LM : Giggs
    ST : Ronaldo
    ST : Cantona

    Subs : Rooney, Scholes, Vidic, Bruce, Irwin, Van De Sar

  • Comment number 5.

    United have only been a decent team for the last few years...
    A much better topic would be the Liverpool best 11...?

  • Comment number 6.

    I could see Ole Gunnar, Sheringham, Yorke or Cole all in before Rooney..

  • Comment number 7.

    #4 - Ince ahead of Scholes? Men in white coats will be arriving shortly...

  • Comment number 8.

    im not man u fan but even im bemused as to why eric djemba djemba and massimo taibi hasnt been mentioned??!!!

    but seriously though what about Jaap Stam? or David May? Jordi Cruyff? Nicky Butt?

  • Comment number 9.

    I would go for:

    GK : Schemeichel
    LB : Irwin
    CB : Ferdinand
    CB : Vidic
    RB : Neville.G
    RM : Ronaldo
    CM : Robson
    CM : Scholes
    LM : Giggs
    ST : van Nistelrooy
    ST : Cantona


    The forward line is hard to choose with York and Cole, Solskjaer, Rooney, Hughes to pick from you could pick one of them and have an amazing strike force, having to choose between Keane and Robson you could flip a coin and be happy.

  • Comment number 10.

    Comment #5 - how delusional are you? Unless by "past few years" you mean the last twenty years...

    Also, this is the best Ferguson team. You want to see the best Houllier XI, or Rafa XI? Thought not.

  • Comment number 11.

    GK : Schemeichel
    LB : Irwin
    CB : Stam
    CB : Vidic
    RB : Neville.G
    RM : Ronaldo
    CM : Keane
    CM : Scholes
    LM : Giggs
    ST : van Nistelrooy
    ST : Cantona

    I cant believe they didn't consider van Nistelrooy, what a centre forward he was! And I disagree with picking partnerships at central defense. I'm picking the best ones, I know stam and vidic probably wouldn't be great together but I dont care, they were immense.

  • Comment number 12.

    GK : Schemeichel
    RB : Neville
    CB : Stam
    CB : Ferdinand
    LB : Irwin
    RM : Beckham
    CM : Keane
    CM : Scholes
    LM : Giggs
    ST : van Nistelrooy
    ST : Cantona

    subs: Van Der Sar, Pallister, Evra, Ronaldo, Robson, Rooney, Hughes

    I understand people putting Ronaldo in, he is a fantastic player, but I actually think this would be a better team as Beckham gives a better balance. Plus Cantona and Van Nistelrooy would score a hatful from Beckham's deliveries, with Ronaldo we'd be too focussed on going through him.

  • Comment number 13.

    4.4.2 diamond
    GK:Schemeichel
    LB:Evra
    CB:Vidic
    CB:Stam
    RB:Irwin
    RM:Beckham
    CDM:Keane
    CAM:Ronaldo
    LM:Giggs
    LCF:Cole
    ST:Van Nistlerooy

  • Comment number 14.

    Rubbish choices! Where's Silvestre?

  • Comment number 15.

    Surely Ferguson's worst IX is more fun:

    Taibi, May, Milne, Cruyff, Fortune......there's plenty more.

  • Comment number 16.

    As this is a United best TEAM selection for me it has to be the 1993/1994 team that was never able to play together in Europe due to the 3 foreigners rule (I still haven't forgiven UEFA). So for me the best United 11 would be:

    Schemichel

    Parker
    Bruce
    Pallister
    Irwin

    Kanchelskis
    Ince
    Keane
    Giggs

    Hughes
    Cantona

    With a bench of - Sealey, G Neville, Sharpe, Robson and Dublin.

    Any takers?

  • Comment number 17.

    Gk - Van der sar

    RB - Neville
    CB - Vidic
    CB - Stam
    LB - Irwin

    RW - Ronaldo
    CM - Keane
    CM - Robson or Scholes (Can't make my mind up on that one)
    LW - Giggs

    ST - Rooney (Could be Ronaldo aslo if Beckham was to play RW)
    ST - Cantona


    Going slighty off the topic here but what are peoples thoughts on this years best starting XI for united ?

  • Comment number 18.

    Sir Alex Ferguson’s Best XI

    Taibi

    Bardsley
    Brown
    May
    Clegg

    Chadwick
    Kleberson
    Djemba-Djemba
    Blomqvist

    Dong
    Bellion

  • Comment number 19.

    Best Fergie 11

    Schemeichel, Neville, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Keane, Scholes, Giggs, Cantona, Rooney

    Second Best: Van Der Sar, Irwin, Pallister, Bruce, Heinze, Beckham, Carrick, Robson, Nani, Yorke, Cole

    Third Best: Barthez, P.Neville, Stam, Johnsen, May, Sharpe, Ince, Butt, Valencia, Solsjaer, Sherigham

  • Comment number 20.

    I'd choose Ruud over Rooney. Ruud was absolutely prolific at his height and would benefit a United best XI more than Rooney. With Ronaldo, Cantona, Keane etc. I think Rooney would be surplus to requirements.

  • Comment number 21.

    Fergie's best 11: Schmeichel
    G Neville
    Stam
    Vidic
    Irwin
    Ronaldo
    Keane
    Robson
    Giggs
    Cantona
    van Nistelrooy


  • Comment number 22.

    Robbo definitely a more complete player than Scholes. More engine, better defensively, more goals, leader and Captain Marvel.

  • Comment number 23.

    There's too many players that you think "How can I leave them out?!" The likes of RVN, Cole&Yorke, Beckham/Ronaldo, Robson.. But why are people asking about Butt?! Come on, yes part of a great team but other than that and being a loyal servant he was nothing special! If if was he'd still be there now!

    GK: Schmeichel

    RB: G. Neville
    CB: Ferdinand
    CB: Stam
    LB: Evra

    RM: Ronaldo
    CM: Scholes
    CM: Keane
    LM: Giggs

    CF: Rooney
    CF: Van Nistelrooy

    Subs: van der Sar, Irwin, Vidic, P. Neville, Beckham, Cantona, Solskjaer (in case we're in trouble after 60 mins)

    I dont agree that the CB choices should be based on partnerships! You dont do that for other positions like some have mentioned Beckham/Neville partnership on the right side. Choose the best two, Rio and Stam get my vote.

    RVN gets the nod over Cantona simply because of his scoring record; was always good for a goal! (and just because Ronaldo is in there doesn't mean others dont need to contribute to scoring!)

    Some obvious choices on the bench but one you may question is P. Neville simply 'cause I struggled to think of another player who could play the holding midfielder like Keane (couldn't choose Butt after slating him =P) and thought of how Neville is now at Everton, perfect!

  • Comment number 24.

    How can anyone not put Paul Scholes in any best Man Utd team from any era?

  • Comment number 25.

    DeanMUFC

    They did consider RVN but Lawro thought with the goals from Ronaldo they didn't need him.

  • Comment number 26.

    Schemichel

    Neville
    Ferdinand
    Pallister
    Irwin

    Ronaldo
    Scholes
    Keane
    Giggs

    Cantona
    Van Nistelrooy

    Bench - VDS, McGrath, Stam, Robson, Beckham, McClair, Cole

  • Comment number 27.

    Best Ever Fergie Team:
    Schmeichal

    Neville
    Ferdinand
    Vidic
    Evra

    Ronaldo
    Keane
    Scholes
    Giggs

    Cantona
    Rooney

    Subs: Van Der Sar, Stam, Irwin, Beckham, Cole, Yorke, Solskjaer

  • Comment number 28.

    Rooney and Cantona? Hmm not too sure about that one, they seem a bit too similar for me. I would have a goal poacher like Van Nistelrooy in there for me instead of Rooney

  • Comment number 29.

    Beckham should never be in the XI.

  • Comment number 30.

    Sir Alex's best XI: SCHMEICHEL, IRWIN, STAM, VIDIC, G.NEVILLE, GIGGS, KEANE(c), SCHOLES, RONALDO, CANTONA, M.HUGHES....Subs: VAN DER SAAR, RIO, ROBSON, RUUD and ROONEY......Sparky and Eric where made for each other.

  • Comment number 31.

    surprised Brian McClair not mentioned ?

  • Comment number 32.

    Pet Shop Boys@26.
    Congratulations. The first one to consider Paul McGrath in the squad.
    I would go further and put him in the team. A sublime player who's only weakness was off the field.

    Schmeichel...........VDS............Bartez
    Neville G...............Parker.........Raph
    Irwin....................Evra...........Neville P
    Keane..................ince............Butt
    McGrath...............Pallister.......Ferdinand
    Stam...................Vidic...........Johnsen
    Ronaldo...............Kanchelskis...Strachan
    Scholes...............Robson.........Beckham
    VanNistlerooy.......Hughes.........Cole
    Cantona..............Rooney.........Yorke
    Giggs..................Sharp...........Valencia
    Apolosies to Teddy..Big Norm...Ole..Brucie etc...just goes to show we could put out a decent 4th team as well.

  • Comment number 33.

    Fair to go with longevity of the team:

    Schmeichel

    G. Neville, Ferdinand, Vidic, Irwin

    Beckham, Keane, Scholes, Giggs

    Rooney, Cantona


    Subs: Van Nistelrooy, Evra, Bruce, Pallister, Butt, Ronaldo, Van Nistelrooy

  • Comment number 34.

    Darren Ferguson (cpt).....................first name on the team sheet

  • Comment number 35.

    RVN scored many goals for UTD, but team goals fell as a result, I like the Rooney Cantona partnership. You need that player who is willing to pick up the ball deep or who holds the ball up well and his work rate is incredible.

    Beckham was the same in terms of workrate and people forget that. I sadly had to go for Ronaldo over Becks (as I said earlier).

    If I had to drop Rooney I would go for Hughes, he too held up the ball well, worked his socks off up front but could turn a game with a great strike.

    As for Cole and York they are a double act. I did admire Cole his only first touch arriving at UTD was to score. But withing a year or two he really developed that first touch.

    Fergie what a master!

  • Comment number 36.

    I toyed with McGrath but he never really fulfilled his potential.

  • Comment number 37.

    GK:Schemeichel
    LB:Evra
    CB:Vidic
    CB:Ferdinand
    RB:Irwin
    RM:Ronaldo
    CDM:Keane
    CAM:Scholes
    LM:Giggs
    LCF:Catona
    ST:Van Nistlerooy

  • Comment number 38.

    errmm....what about bobby charlton? and rooney over law is insane.

  • Comment number 39.

    Fergusons best Man Utd 11
    Schmeichel
    G Neville
    Stam
    Vidic
    Evra
    Beckham
    Robson (Captain)
    Keane
    Giggs
    Cantona
    Ronaldo

    Subs...Rooney, Van Nistelrooy, Scholes, Van der Sar, Irwin, Ferdinand, Whiteside

  • Comment number 40.

    Van der Sar
    Evra Bruce Vidic G.Neville
    Ronaldo Giggs Scholes Beckham
    Cantona Solskjaer

    subs: Schmeical, Kancheslskis,Hernandez,Ferdinand,Hughes,Nani,Fletcher

  • Comment number 41.

    @eyez
    You really need to read the brief a little better! FERGUSON'S Man Utd, not Man Utd of all time!

    @DFaraday @15.
    Worst side ever would be fun:

    GK Mark Bosnich

    DF Henning Berg
    DF Philip Neville
    DF Lee Martin
    DF Graeme Hogg

    MF Juan Sebastien Veron
    MF Robbie Savage
    MF Jesper Blomqvist
    MF Eric Nevland

    ST Karel Poborsky
    ST Michael Owen (Sorry, I like the guy and his career has been plagued, but what was Fergy thinking?)

  • Comment number 42.

    They may be the best players but certainly not the best team. Cant see Cantona and Rooney working as a strike partnership. Need Van the Man. Also cant see any centre back better than Vidic. the midfield looks great but not as a group.

  • Comment number 43.

    Best United XI

    Schmeichel, (Rb)irwin (Lb) Evra (2 cb's) Vidic & Stam
    Ronaldo keane scholes beckham
    rooney Van Nistleroy

    Fin.

  • Comment number 44.

    Got to agree with post number 11 by DEANMUFC.
    That is an awesome group of players, and dare I say it, they would play well together.

  • Comment number 45.

    OK - I think

    GK. Van Der Sar

    RB. G. Neville
    CB. Vidic
    CB. Ferdinand
    LB. Evra

    RW. Ronaldo
    CM. Scholes
    DM. Keane
    CM. Robson
    LW. Giggs

    ST. Van Nistelrooy

    Subs; Schmeicel, Irwin, Stam, Strachan, Beckham, Cantona, Rooney

  • Comment number 46.

    GK - Schmeichel
    LB - Evra
    CB - Ferdinand
    CB - Stam
    RB - Neville
    LM - Giggs
    CM - Keane
    CM - Scholes
    RM - Ronaldo
    CF - Cantona
    CF - RVN

    Subs
    Van Der Sar
    Irwin
    Vidic
    Sheringham
    Hughes
    Beckham
    Rooney

    RVN is clearly a fairly polarizing figure and I don't understand why. People say we didn't win many trophies with him, which is true, as if he was one man responsible for the whole team. He did his job, put the ball in the net. The reason we didn't win much in those years is because SAF was going through the worst stage in his Man U career.
    There are much more obvious reasons for this being a relatively lean period
    1.Same year he buys RVN he also buys Veron, the most expensive flop we have had. 2.If you look at peoples worse teams they are generally people bought in this stage. The Klebersons, Djemba Djemba etc.
    3.We were stuck in this awful goal keeping limbo between Schmeichel and VDS, where we had some truly shocking attempts at filling in the big Danes gloves. (Personally I think SAF's biggest mistake is not getting VDS when Schmeichel left or at least getting him earlier when he was playing for Fulham)

    This latest video was truely awful. So the two pundits have talked about partnerships in the CB pairings and in the midfield, yet completly ignore this when it comes to up front and pick two of the same kind of players to play there. Cantona and Rooney are both great, but they would get in each others way too much. And what is this Ronaldo is going to score all the goals so we don't need a goal scorerer up front? What absolute gibberish. If that is the case why even bother with forwards at all?
    Can't the BBC find some pundits who might disagree abit more too? Wasn't it really boring to have them both just agree on everything.

  • Comment number 47.

    #16, that truly was an awsome and fearsome team, but...

    My SAF best 11

    Schmeichel
    G. Neville
    Ferdinand
    Stam
    Irwin
    Ronaldo
    Keane
    Scholes
    Giggs

    Cantona
    Ruud Van Nistelrooy

    ....wow.

  • Comment number 48.

    Far too many so called Man utd fans picking teams that havent got a clue! And why are people talking about Law and Charlton? Never played for Ferguson!!

    The only possible team that could ever be considered as the best XI of Fergies era is this:

    Schmeichel

    G Neville - Best right back in England for a long time.
    Ferdinand - Bruce and Pallister wouldnt have lived with todays strikers
    Vidic - Possibly one of the best CB's in the world right now
    Evra - One of the worlds best left backs today

    Ronaldo - 42 goals in a season? Beckham is nowhere near as good.
    Keane - Had a fighting spirit no Man utd midfielder has ever had
    Scholes - Understated. Better than Robson.
    Giggs - No explanation needed

    Cantona - Best MUFC player for 40 years. Most influential ever.
    Rooney - Still one of the worlds leading talents, would thrive playing ahead of Cantona.

    Someone put Nicky Butt on their bench???? Ridiculous. Andrei Kanchelskis, Paul Parker and Andy Cole are appalling choices by people that know nothing about football!!
    Van der sar, Stam, Robson, Van Nistelrooy and Hughes are all good shouts, just not quite as good as the above 11.

  • Comment number 49.

    Where's Robbo? I thought. then I remember him being just a little bit creaky and coming to then end of his best days when Fergie took the helm.

    My 11 would be

    Schmeichel

    G. Neville
    Vidic
    Pique
    Heinze

    Beckham
    Keane
    Scholes
    Giggs

    Ronaldo
    Cantona

    Bench: Rooney, Evra, Ferdinand, Van Nistelroy, Ince.

  • Comment number 50.

    For me it's gotta be:
    Schmeichel
    Irwin Bruce Stam G neville
    Giggs Robson Keane Ronaldo
    Cantona
    Van nistelroy

  • Comment number 51.

    Fergies best XI

    1. Howard Webb
    2. Mark Clattenberg
    3. Martin Atkinson
    4. Phil Dowd
    5. Andre Mariner
    6. Mike Dean
    7. Lee Mason
    8. Chris Foy
    9. Mike Jones
    10. Mark Halsey
    11. Old Mother Riley

  • Comment number 52.

    @51 - No subs?

  • Comment number 53.

    GK : Schemeichel
    LB : Evra
    CB : Mcgrath
    CB : Vidic
    RB : Irwin
    CM : Giggs
    CM : Keane
    CM : Scholes
    LS : Rooney
    CS : Ronaldo
    RS : Tevez

  • Comment number 54.

    United to beat Barca in the final. I'm gonna money on it, I'm so sure.

  • Comment number 55.

    best xi

    lindergaard

    brown
    evans
    de laet
    John O'shea

    Djemba Djemba
    Blomqvist
    Nevland
    Ronaldo

    Macheda
    Owen

  • Comment number 56.

    always got to have ruud

    Schmeichel

    G Neville
    Ferdinand
    Stam
    Evra

    Becks
    Scholes
    Keane
    Giggs

    Ronaldo

    Ruud

    Van Der Sar Vidic Irwin Carrick Valencia Rooney Cantona

  • Comment number 57.

    Mark84 (comment #41), what planet are you from? Poborsky among the worst ever? You're mad - I was there when he got a standing ovation on his return to Old Trafford (admittedly while he was being sent off for Lyon). Only reason he didn't grace Old Trafford for years was Beckham - whose absence from so many of the lists above I find inexplicable. Becks should be there instead of Ronaldo - who's a stunningly talented show-pony without a team ethic and sulks far too easily.

    Just a thought - how many trophies did Beckham and Ronaldo win after leaving Old Trafford? I count 1 minor cup between them so far.

  • Comment number 58.

    where is Ruud Vanistelrooy on the list?

  • Comment number 59.

    Standard 4-4-2
    GK: Schemeichel
    RB: G.Neville
    CB: Stam
    CB: Vidic
    LB: Irwin
    RM: C.Ronaldo (most difficult choice)
    CM: Keane
    CM: Scholes
    LM: Giggs
    CF: Cantona
    CF: Van Nistelrooy

    Alternatively

    Schemeichel

    G.Neville Stam Vidic Irwin
    Keane
    Beckham Giggs
    Ronaldo Cantona

    RVN

    Rooney is great but van nistelrooy was the better finisher. In a few years time Rooney might replace him. Just needs to be more clinical in front of goal.

  • Comment number 60.

    Post 59 Midfield Formation

    Keane as midfield anchor. Beckham and Giggs wide. Ronaldo centre right attacking midfield behind RVN and Cantona centre left attacking midfield behind RVN.

  • Comment number 61.

    For me it has to be:

    GK: Schmeichal

    RB: Gary Neville
    CB: Ferdinand
    CB: Vidic
    LB: Irwin

    RM: Ronaldo
    CM: Keane
    CM: Scholes
    LM: Giggs

    SS: Cantona
    ST: Van Nistelrooy

    With a subs bench of: Van Der Sar, Stam, Evra, Robson, Beckham, Rooney, Cole

    I think this team with everyone at their peak would be almost unbeatable. Rock solid defence with good supporting fullbacks, brilliant central midfield, plenty of attacking width, Cantona in a free forward role to link up, and Van Nistelrooy up top to bang in the goals. Enough options on the bench to freshen things up as well.

  • Comment number 62.

    @57

    Beckham won La Liga under Capello.

  • Comment number 63.

    @15 I agree, the Worst XI is far more entertaining than the Best XI!

    @51 hahaha. Wonder how much Fergie Time they'd get!

  • Comment number 64.

    For me it has to be as follows:

    Schmeichel

    Neville, Ferdinand, Vidic, Irwin

    Beckham, Keane, Scholes, Giggs

    Ronaldo, Cantona.

    Subs: VDS, Stam, Pallister, Robson, Rooney, RVN, Ole (best sub we have ever had)

    Irwin was more of a complete player than Evra, due to his defensive qualities. In 07/08 and 08/09 which were Ronaldo's best years he played more of a central role, so I see no problem with putting him there and having Beckham on the right. Cantona just shades it over Ruud and Rooney for his influence on the team as a whole, though his lack of goals compared to Ruud would be a concern.

  • Comment number 65.

    Mr G. Best anyone?

  • Comment number 66.

    Park deserves a place at least on the bench for work rate and his abilaty to fire when others are having an ordinary day!

  • Comment number 67.

    GK - Rock of Gibraltar
    RB - Jose Mourinho's paint stripper
    CB - Alan Hansen
    CB - Sam Allardyce's lips
    LB - Cabernet Sauvignon
    RM-David Cameron
    CM-Jason Ferguson
    CM-Alan Wiley, midfield dynamo
    LM-Gordon Strachan
    ST- What a Friend
    ST- Kevin Keegan

  • Comment number 68.

    @ marklwatson
    I dont get your comment, Liverpool were regularly succesful for a period of just under 20 years the same as Manchester United have been with both having some success before the 70's. Seen purely on who has had the longer spell of domination I'd say they're very close

  • Comment number 69.

    AM I THE ONLY ONE WHO REMEMBERS MARK HUGHES???

    MUCH BETTER THAN ROONEY VAN NISTELROOY ETC IN PRESSURE SITUATIONS. I WOULD PICK MARK HUGHES OVER ROONY ANY DAY OF THE WEEK.

  • Comment number 70.

    ROONEY IS THE MOST OVER RATED PLAYER IN BRITISH HISTORY!

  • Comment number 71.

    I can't believe only one person has put tevez in the team. Rooney, ronaldo and tevez were so good in attack together.

    GK: Schmeichel
    RB: G.Neville
    CB: Stam
    CB: Vidic
    LB: Evra
    DM: Keane
    LCM: Giggs
    RCM: Beckham
    RS: Ronaldo
    LS: Tevez
    ST: Rooney

  • Comment number 72.

    There is not a serious post above that does not include Giggs...now just to let you know, I would like to make babies with this man however...it is my opinion that he is viewed through rose tinted glasses due to his longevity and unparalleled individual trophy haul, both of which are infinitely impressive.

    I'm not saying that I wouldn't include him in my team...but my point is that there are valid reasons why you'd give the nod to others.

    For much of his early career, he'd do all the hard work but fail to deliver the final ball, he is severally one footed, not always a certain finisher (Chelsea this year - I know he set up every goal, but he could and should have scored about 6!) and he has arguably enjoyed his most influential seasons in his twilight years in the centre of the park.
    Therefore, on the wing arguably Beckham for set-pieces and unsurpassed distribution of the ball. Ronaldo for goals and pure terrorism of defenders. In the centre, is he better than Robson, Keane or Scholes at their peak? No.

    GK Schmeichel (World’s best GK - VDS very close second)
    LB Irwin (United's BIGGEST unsung hero, good free kicks)
    CB Bruce (superb captain, penalty taker, massive goal threat)
    CB Vidic (pips Rio and Pall due to injuries)
    RB Neville (is a RED, tireless work rate, great crosser, linked up with Becks!)
    LW Ronaldo (or maybe Giggs)
    CM Keane (would beat the opposition in the tunnel – Fergie’s greatest purchase)
    CM Scholes (United's greatest home grown talent)
    RM Beckham (freekicks ALLways a threat - pinpoint crosses!)
    ST Cantona (Legend - he picks himself over Rooney)
    ST Van Nistlerooy (He'd always score, nuff said)

  • Comment number 73.

    As I see it, a forward's job is to put the ball in the back of the net. Rooney - 146 goals in 321 games for MU for a 0.45 goal per game ratio. Ruud van Nistlerooy - 150 goals in 219 games for MU for a 0.68 goals per game ratio. Compare that to Eric Cantona (whom everybody seems to agree is the "best" forward MU had under Ferguson) - 82 goals in 185 games for a 0.44 goals per game average. Uh huh. And RVN isn't included ... why?

  • Comment number 74.

    #69 - Hughes' youtube compilation would probably make the most entertaining viewing... but never did Hughes score more than 20 league goals. Terrific at holding the ball, with back to goal, but is he in the same league as other United Strikers in terms of linking the play, assists and pure goals...probably not.

    #73 - of course goals are how you ultimately rate a striker, but the likes of Rooney and Cantona, they play in the pocket and link the whole team as an attacking unit. Players like these are few and far between. But, point taken you still need someone to hit the back of the net.

  • Comment number 75.

    #74 I agree that different players can bring different qualities into attack, which makes the Lawro and Dixon choices even more "surprising". Why have two "in the pocket" strikers? For a few more comparisons: Andy Cole - 93 goals in 195 games for a 0.47 goals per game average for MU. Dwight Yorke - 66 goals in 147 games for MU for a 0.44 goals per game average. Mark Hughes - 119 goals in 345 games for MU for a 0.34 goals per game average. Alan Shearer - 379 goals in 733 games for all teams played for a 0.51 goals per game average. Thierry Henry - 226 goals in 369 games for Arsenal for a 0.61 goal per game average. Didier Drogba - 144 goals in 301 games for Chelsea for a 0.47 goals per game average. And I think this one is very interesting, Lionel Messi - 179 goals in 268 games for Barcelona for a 0.66 goals per game average. So, for as sensational as everyone thinks Lionel Messi is for Barcelona, RVN was even more proficient in front of goal for Manchester United.

  • Comment number 76.

    Schmeichel
    G. Neville
    Ferdinand
    Bruce
    Irwin
    Keane
    Robson (Scholes)
    Beckham
    Ronaldo
    Cantona
    Giggs

  • Comment number 77.

    Schmeical

    Beckham(but delivering from deep) Bruce Pallister Irwin

    Ronaldo Keane Scholes Giggs

    Cole Yorke

  • Comment number 78.

    Let me start by saying (as the name hints) I am a Liverpool fan (congrats on the 19th by the way) I have a lot of utd fan and was actually at old Trafford with a couple of them on Tuesday for neville's testimonial. Which brings me to my comment, it bemuses me how only a few of you (well done you) have put Beckham in your team. As a Liverpool fan I couldn't give a monkeys who is in sir Alex's best 11 but when it comes the Beckham for me he is 1st name on sheet every time. Tuesday night he played with deadly accuracy, looked pacey, and linked up with the team (especially giggs' brief cameo) like he was still turning out in the famous red shirt week in week out, and for me, could and should be. And need I remind you all who's corners lead to utd capturing the champions league for the first time in over 30yrs!

  • Comment number 79.

    A bit of a late entry here but I don't think anybody has mentioned Henrik Larsson yet. OK we got him 4 years after we wanted him, at the twilight of his career, after he was so loyal to Celtic but he still had an impact. This is no insult to Hughes, Cole, Yorke, Ole, Teddy or RVN but if we are picking a team where players compliment each other then just imagine Cantona or Rooney paired with a predator like Larsson. He had pace, killer instinct and skill. One of the most under rated players as he left it late on to appear in the big leagues but no doubt he could cut it.

    Similar theory at the back. A pairing of Rio and McGrath in their prime is mouth-watering, no insult to Brucie or Vidic - the next best pairing. Pallister made too many mistakes.

    Schmeichel or VDS (two of the best ever)
    G Nev (yeah I know they all hate him)
    Rio
    McGrath
    Irwin (just edges Evra in the tackle)
    Cristiano Ronaldo
    Roy Keane (captain)
    Paul Scholes
    Giggs (tart)
    Cantona
    Larsson

    Bench: Ole, Teddy, Rooney, RVN, Yorke, Cole, Hughes, Beckham (well this is Utd after all!)

    Alternative Bench: Morrissey, Ian Brown, Tim Burgess, Russell Watson, Terry Christian, Jimmy Nesbitt.

  • Comment number 80.

    GK Van der sar

    LB Evra
    RCB Irwin
    LCB Vidic
    RB G.Neville

    LM Giggs
    RCM scholes
    LCM Keane
    RM Ronaldo

    RS Van Nistelrooy
    LS Cantona

  • Comment number 81.

    Rooney is the best player in the world on current form, and by some distance. Why would he not get in the best United team? It is likely that in a couple of years time he will be considered the best player of all time, and with good cause.

  • Comment number 82.

    Roy Keane or Scholes? Well Roy Keane was the same standard as Scholes at tackling but Scholes has the passing, goals and leadership qualities.

  • Comment number 83.

    Schmeichel
    Evra
    Stam
    Vidic
    Irwin
    Giggs
    Keane
    Scholes
    Beckham (C. Ronaldo better but too self-serving)
    Rooney
    Van Nistelrooy

  • Comment number 84.


    @mark84

    What are you thinking with Owen in there? You would seriously put him ahead of Diouf, Dong, Nevland, Bellion or Macheda?

    Deary deary me.

  • Comment number 85.

    Comment #5 you must be a Liverpool fan as in your eyes 20 odd years are a few years...Liverpool were great in the 70s and 80s, so again 20 years...maybe a shankley best 11 or Paisley best 11 you mean but this is fergies 20 years in charge at Man Utd.
    My Eleven:
    GK Schmeichel
    RB G.Neville
    LB Evra
    CB Vidic
    CB Pallister
    RM Beckham
    LM Giggs (12 Titles!)
    CM Scholes
    CM Keane
    AM Ronaldo
    CF Pick one of many but I will go for Van Nistelrooy, his goalscoring record was immense

    Bascially you cant have this team without Beckham, Ronaldo and Schmeichel! I mean Ronaldo won every award possible playing for Man Utd

  • Comment number 86.

    Steve Ogrizovic

    Steve Potts
    Ken Monkou
    Michael Duberry
    Francis Benali

    Andy Impey
    Peter Fear
    Stuart Draper
    Steve Froggatt

    Ali Dia
    Chris Kiwomya



  • Comment number 87.

    People not including yorke are deluded. Best, most complete striker we have had for ages, 32 goals and 23 assists in 99 should have won wpoty. Shame it went down hill after that but in his prime for us he was unreal. Should have won wpoty in 99. And just because his partnership was so good that remains untouchable so cole gets the other slot.

  • Comment number 88.

    #75 Cristiano Ronaldo for Real Madrid - 66 goals in 63 games for Real Madrid for a 1.05 goal per game average

  • Comment number 89.

    Rooney? Really? Yorke, Sheringham, Cole, van Nistelrooy and the baby-faced assassin himself should all be ahead of him in the pecking order.

    BBC, sort it out, you've lost it.

  • Comment number 90.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 91.

    Schmeicel
    neville
    stam
    vidic
    evra
    beckham
    scholes
    keane
    giggs
    ronaldo
    rooney

    Rooney before Cantona every time for me....He, like Cantona, is perhaps not the best striker of the ball but there are 100 other reasons why UTD have been lost without him when he's missed games pretty much since he first wore the shirt. Ronaldo is a prize pillock as was Roy Keane and Evra can be a fool but you need ballwinners and goal scorers not gentlemen....the fact that a few of my choices are 'orrible oiks and degenerates is unimportant as all have given 100%, made it look good and above all they have done it much better than the rest.

  • Comment number 92.

    I disagree with Lawro and Dixon, I think it's incredible that Ruud Van Nistelrooy did not make in either of their teams. In my opinion it'd be Cantona and Nistelrooy upfront.

  • Comment number 93.

    as a manchester united fan it disappoints me that I wasnt old enough to have seen the likes of schmeichel, cole, yorke, sheringham and cantona to name a few so I can only judge on what I've regularly seen so this is my XI:GK-Van Der Sar, Brown, Ferdinand & Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo,Keane & Scholes, Giggs, Solskjaer & Van Nistelrooy

  • Comment number 94.

    It's really hard as Manchester United have so many quality players throughout the years... You could easily pick two teams, without using the same players, such is the quality of United through the years. So here goes:

    1. Schmeichel.
    2. Irwin.
    3. Vidic.
    4. Stam.
    5. G. Neville.
    6. Ronaldo.
    7. Robson.
    8. Keane.
    9. Van Nistelrooy.
    10. Cantona.
    11. Giggs.

    Team 2

    1. Van Der Sar.
    2. Evra.
    3. Pallister.
    4. Ferdinand.
    5. Moses.
    6. Beckham.
    7. Ince.
    8. Scholes.
    9. Charlton.
    10. Edwards.
    11. Best.

    It's really hard... I have even missed out great players such as, Dennis Law, Wayne Rooney, Nobby Stiles, Andy Cole, Ray Wilkins, Ole Solskjaer, Andrei Kanchelskis, Paul Mcgrath, Viv Anderson and Dwight Yorke...

  • Comment number 95.

    van der sar, g.neville, vidic, pallister, evra, ronaldo, giggs, scholes, beckham, hernandez, van nistelrooy

  • Comment number 96.

    Firstly people puting Scholes and Giggs in their team is a complete joke. Beckham was a complete CLASS ABOVE Giggs when at Man U. The voters obviously never analyze the game and just listen to not very clever commentators.
    Anyway....

    Schmeichel

    G.Neville
    Stam
    Vidic
    Irwin

    Beckham
    Keane
    Robson
    Ronaldo

    Cantona
    Van Nistelrooy

    Subs:
    Van Der Sar
    Pallister
    Evra
    Scholes
    Nani
    Hughes
    Solskjaer

  • Comment number 97.

    Sorry, I think Lawro and Dixon are both good pundits. But they've bottled it on the forwards and gone for the lazy "Rooney greatest English talent of the last 20 years" option. Judged on a goal-scoring forward, van Nistelrooy has to be in there instead: no question. In fact, if Rooney plays a great match tonight, perhaps he should be there instead of Cantona (what a heinous crime! But then I don't understand those Utd supporters who say Cantona was a greater Utd player than George Best...)?

    Couple more comments. A few (only a few) preferring Robson to Scholes. Come on! Robbo was nearing the end of his career when playing under Fergie. Whereas Scholes probably is the "greatest English talent of the last 20 years".

    And whoever is voting for Michael Owen in the worst side is just being sick. Show some respect.

  • Comment number 98.

    London who's going to win?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFh9KwXYrbc

  • Comment number 99.

    I'm going for a squad - 22 man

    Schmeichel
    Van Der Sar

    G. Neville
    McGrath
    Vidic
    Pallister
    Ferdinand
    Evra
    Irwin

    Robson
    Ince
    Keane
    Scholes
    Beckham
    Sharpe
    Ronaldo
    Kanchelskis
    Giggs

    Hughes
    Cantona
    Van Nistlerooy
    Rooney


    Stand by
    Stam
    Parker
    Butt
    Whiteside
    Cole
    Sheringham
    Tevez



  • Comment number 100.

    I find it unbelievable how few people have mentioned George Best and Bobby Charlton. As for the line-ups I also find it strange that no-one has mentioned Duncan Edwards.


 

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