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Gary Neville is a Red, he hates…retirement?!

If Gary Neville ever considered changing his name, I’m sure ‘Manchester United’ would be somewhere at the top of his list of choices. Not the most popular of Christian names but you just know it would suit our club captain to a tee. It is without doubt that Neville is Mr Manchester United and he literally has our great club coursing through his veins.

Unfortunately, as I’m sure you are all aware, the fist pumping days that followed victories over Liverpool could soon be nothing more than a distant memory. With the emergence of young Rafael and the consistently polished performances of Wes Brown throughout last season, Neville may just want to focus on acquiring those coaching badges sooner rather than later as I don’t really see him as the pundit type. Do you?

Reliable, strong in the tackle and capable of getting forward too, it’s not hard to understand why the Gary Neville of yesteryear was once considered one of the best full-backs in world football.

Although at 34-years-old, I can’t help but notice that Neville’s days at Manchester United are close to being well and truly numbered, if of course they aren’t already.

So what exactly went wrong for a player that could once undisputedly call the right-back slot his own for both club and country? Well a spate of injuries over the last few years clearly didn’t help and the emergence of Rafael hasn’t done him any favours either. Yet even in the handful of appearances Neville has made this season, he’s hardly provided any real room for optimism or hope.

The attacking trio of John Carew, Ashley Young and Gabriel Agbonlahor pretty much ripped him apart at Old Trafford a couple of weeks back and he hardly fared much better in his latest outing against Sunderland. I even hear he’s resorted to diving. Gary Neville diving for fucks sake! Surely that’s the last straw.

In all fairness, wedged between some of those indifferent displays there have been some good performances too, most notably at Stamford Bridge earlier in the season. Yet with both Brown and Rafael well on the road to recovery, can we really afford to keep giving Neville a chance to impress just because of his reputation and affiliation with the fans.

The most painful thing for Gary Neville is that he still clearly has the burning desire to succeed at United and he will cease to shirk the opportunity to pull on the famous Red shirt. That sort of trait will never desert him however much he knows deep down that he isn’t the player he once was.

Neville has openly admitted that the day he leaves Manchester United will feel like falling off a cliff. As much as I hate to say it Gary, sooner or later you’re going to have to make that plunge for the good of the club if nothing else and I’m sure you know it too.

27 Comments

27 Comments

  1. johnsom33

    17 April 2009 at 18:54

    For anybody who goes to alot of reserve matches, have you seen fabio and rafael play together? if so how did they look, did they get out to far up alot?

  2. Trevor Clatworthy

    17 April 2009 at 19:53

    Some fans are very quick to jump on the band wagon! We might be running out of games for Gary Nevile this season, i dont thik he will be match fit!

    When he is match fit it lets judge him then lads! In honesty in my opinion i dont think there is a better right back in the league on his day and he has something to offer us!

    Wes Brown is good although how many times has he been injured during his career! Hardly Mr Dependable!

    The main point i want to make is that it is time that People Trust Sir Alex and Stop getting on our players backs!

  3. Dan

    17 April 2009 at 19:59

    The day the trio of neville, scholes and giggs retire, i think will be much bigger then the day fergie retires. And all 4 could happen at the end of the season, i would go as far to say that atleast one of then will retire this year, and it will hurt, but i hope its either Red nev or scholes. They’re past it and they know it, time to go in my opinion.

    There are 3 people in Red Nevs Marriage, him, his wife and united. Now when he retires, its like a bunch of scouse just shot united, and now uniteds gone in his marriage and life, it will leave him devastated. Thats why he wont retire.

  4. UnitedUnited

    17 April 2009 at 20:01

    The first time I saw that “dive” I thought he slipped, but it really was embarrassing. He still has the odd performance left in him. But with Scholes and Giggs apparently fitter than him and still having some steam left in them he perhaps feels that he can go on too, which might still be true. Since Wes and Rafael were both injured and since at one point of time we didn’t have Evra as well, he and O’Shea were asked to play.

    I still think he has enough steam left in him to last another season. Although I fully agree that he doesn’t seem the kind who knows when to leave. The worst possible thing would be Fergie dropping him and then forcing him to leave. An intelligent player is one who always knows when to leave.

  5. Matt

    17 April 2009 at 20:16

    Well i would definitely think edwin will retire next season along with scholes and neville. Giggsy still has maybe another 2 seasons left in him, maybe he will end up going out when fergie calls it a day, who knows. In terms of what they have to offer i still think all of them have something to offer but certain players can offer a bit more. Neville is a RB but he has 3 players i would probably say were ahead of him in rafael, brown and oshea. The central midfield is a position we have changed on a weekly basis this year so both scholes and giggs will continue to get chances unless we invest in that position this summer which i cant see us doing.
    All of them are not exactly past it, even neville who got some criticism in the sunderland game was a player i thought did pretty well. He seems the weakest of the 3 oldies but as i say they all have a role to play. Hopefully they will all accept coaching jobs at the club when they do hang up their boots, cos the 3 of giggsy, scholes and nev are some of the 3 most successful, humble players you could ever meet, and if you cant learn anything from them you wont from anyone.

  6. Will

    17 April 2009 at 20:39

    gary will take the route that Ole has, going into coaching at Utd. they will make a great managing duo in the years to come. well, gotta be better than shearer right?

  7. Red Ranter

    17 April 2009 at 20:45

    @Trevor Clatworthy: Quick to jump on the bandwagon? We’ve been patient with him for the last 2 years. It’s obvious that, while the desire is very much there his body won’t let him play at the same high levels that he’s been used. That, I suppose is hurting him more than anything. He bleeds United, and that’s what stops him from retiring. Ferguson rewards him for his loyalty (not for his ability to play 4 games in a row) because, if it were anyone else other than Giggs, Neville or Scholesy, he wouldn’t think twice before dumping them, and you know that.

    And there’s nothing wrong in making a measured assessment (positive/negative) on our players. We are not “getting on the backs” as you seem to put it.

  8. Traverse

    17 April 2009 at 20:48

    Neville will definitely be among our Defensive coaching staff, so Manchester United will never be out of his life. We love the ugly bastard, and he loves us. I hope Neville goes out at the end of this season, winning every trophy in the process. It’s a fitting tribute to his never say die attitude and desire to win. Unfortunately age has caught up with him, and I’d much prefer to remember him as the marauding full back jumping up and fisting the air and kissing the badge with everything he’s got, than as a boxer who goes 2 fights too many.

    Giggs wil stay around another season or two, and then he’ll probably be a youth team manager as Solskjaer moves up the foodchain (hopefully past Phelan to the assistant job). By then players like Rio, Vidic, Carrick and Berbatov will be the elders of the team for the young players to look up to.

    I think Scholes is going to be the biggest miss, cause when he’s gone we’ll never hear from him again. I don’t think he’s interested in being a coach… He’ll just be gone and that’s that. It’ll be a very sad.

    I’m 24. Alex Ferguson is the only Manager I have ever known. When he goes it’ll feel like I have lost an old friend. I feel sorry for whoever takes over from the boss, because they will never be good enough.

  9. Karl

    17 April 2009 at 21:23

    I would also love for Gary to retire at the end of this season. I love him to bits and would like to have fond memories of him overlapping and owning the entire right hand side of the field. I fear that his later performances is kinda shadowing the picture I would love to remember him by. That said, from a team perspective, I wont be too upset if he stays another season – as a backup RB.

  10. Dan

    17 April 2009 at 22:16

    He has had a couple of matches that where good enough to put him in contention for the right back spot, but the bad ones out way the good.

    You never know though, giggs looked lost last season we where all calling for his head, now with the move to CM, he looks a completely new player, thats good enough to start for us.

  11. Matt

    17 April 2009 at 22:28

    Didnt gary just sign a 2 year extension this year. It was either early 2009 or xmas 08 but i could have sworn that he signed a new contract. Im pretty sure his old contract is up this summer so if he didnt sign a new contract then he may decide to go on out this summer.
    Traverse, as you say about fergie, im 18, hes been at the club longer than ive been alive. Ive supported this club since i was 8, thats 10 years of seeing him every week, of every year and your right when he decides to move on it will be like loosing a family member of something. I have heard him make comments just recently though saying he wanted to stay on at the club in some role after retiring so although he wouldnt be the manager it would still be good to know he was around and occassionally hear from him. It really does make me feel terrified when i think about him quitting, i really do. Hopefully that day is a while off though.
    Just a final unrelated point, i was watching an old dvd about the king that is eric cantona and just couldnt believe the impact he had at our club. It so nearly could have been 5 titles in his 5 years with us had he not got suspended that season, just utterly amazing what he did for the team. Unfortunately i was too young to watch him so i only see him on the short dvds but for me on his impact alone he must be the best player weve had in the last 20 years. I also think that team in 94 was better than the team today aswell but i would like to hear someones view on that who was old enough to remember the team.

  12. michael

    17 April 2009 at 23:03

    @johnsom33:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gQWTdsTCiB4&feature=related is probably the best highlight video of the two of them but from watching reserve highlights on youtube it seems that when fit they are first choice fullbacks for the reserves.

    @Matt:
    I think you’re right about Gary’s contract but not sure. The current side is streets ahead of 94 in objective terms (skill, pace, intelligence, tactics) but played against much weaker opposition in the league. Our poor performances in Europe in the 90s reflect this. Fantastic side though, great approach to the game.

  13. footballguy

    17 April 2009 at 23:46

    oh my goodness ENOUGH with the hyperbole and Over dramtic statemts

    this article is outrageous…

    Gary neville may not be playin that well , but hes still first choice, maybe not automatic, but because of his experience,

    though the right back spot will be rotated between himslef, wes and rafael….do u really think in he wont no longer be considered in the team

    how long have you guys watched football? or watched man utd

    of course hell retire soon, (barring more injury)not any time soon,

    its not the end of the world if he starts/in the team as right back. COMMMONN!!!!!!

  14. Redrich

    18 April 2009 at 01:31

    @footballguy: For those of us that have been watching Gary Neville over the years the article is actually right on.
    He has epitomized the very life and soul of our team, and in his day was one of the better backs in Europe. So to see him struggle, as he has, this season has put a lot of us in a quandary as to how to feel about him.
    The very idea that he still gets playing time when, clearly, he is not up to snuff, aggrieves our sensibilities as “ranters”, but at the same time we remember the good times with Gary and somehow wish they would roll around again.
    To appreciate a player that has performed his heart out for us over the years and to offer a small gesture of explanation to how we feel right now, is not an over-dramatization, or hyperbole or outrageous!!

  15. Red Ranter

    18 April 2009 at 01:56

    @Redrich: I thought of responding to him, but it looks like he’s been smoking something illegal. 😀

  16. Redrich

    18 April 2009 at 02:24

    @Red Ranter: Either that, or perhaps he should!!

  17. Redrich

    18 April 2009 at 02:44

    Anyone know if Liverpool’s playing this weekend??? 😆 😆 😆

  18. Grognard

    18 April 2009 at 03:43

    I couldn’t give a rats ass about Gary Neville. Retire PLEASE! 🙄

  19. Dan

    18 April 2009 at 09:48

    @footballguy: Are you stupid or high? or both…

    I would like to know how long you’ve been supporting united to be honest, judging by your spelling, and the overall meaning of your comment, not long.

  20. Dan

    18 April 2009 at 09:52

    @Grognard: You dont mean that, gary neville IS Manchester United, and it will be a sad day when he finally hangs up his boots. You may want him to retire, a lot of us do(including myself), but that doesnt take away the sadness of him actually doing it.

  21. julio

    18 April 2009 at 09:59

    i doubt redrich.anyways he is to us beating Everton :mrgreen:

  22. Red Ranter

    18 April 2009 at 11:07

    @Dan: I think he actually means that. He’s said it before that he doesn’t give a damn about Neville and he’s never rated him anyway.

    Anyway new post up.

  23. Dan

    18 April 2009 at 12:24

    @Red Ranter: Well thats shocking to say the least. Cant believe he would say that.

  24. Craig Mc

    18 April 2009 at 15:18

    Red Nev – LEGEND for most of his playing days at United. Loved by ALL who frequent the OT terraces, and has been mightily loved for years. His injuries are not as easy to go away now, because age, and arthritis have crept in. But NOBODY has a bigger Man United heart that Red Nev, and never will have probably. He has always been a winner, and it is sad he is in the autumn of his career. His final curtain is almost down, but he will never be forgotten by the United faithful – EVER! I also believe, and don’t care who jumps on my back for it, that Fergie is on final curtain call, and if indeed we do retain CL and PL this season, I think Fergie should BOW OUT while he is at the very top. I would hate to see him retire on a downward slope.

  25. Babyface

    18 April 2009 at 16:15

    Craig: Here here

  26. Grognard

    18 April 2009 at 17:10

    @Dan: Ahh…..Yes I do. 😀

  27. Pingback: Is the end nigh for shy guy Scholes?

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