Many clubs have numbers that have been worn by legends. West Ham have the number six worn by Bobby Moore and Chelsea have the number 25 worn by Gianfranco Zola. At Manchester United, their number seven shirt isn't like this. That particular top has been worn by not just one club legend, but by a number of them.
Many club legends have worn the number seven shirt at Manchester United. With the players winning countless accolades for club, country, and themselves. At the club, there is a huge expectation when given the number. Many players have turned it down or given the number back after receiving it.
Best number sevens
Here - in no particular order - we take a look at five of the best players to don the number seven shirt for Manchester United.
5. David Beckham
A member of the infamous 'Class of '92', Beckham is one of the club legends that wore the number seven shirt. After the departure of Eric Cantona in 1997, the number was available and the Englishman took it over. Over the next few years, as number seven, Beckham helped club and country to successes and qualifications. A move to Spanish side Real Madrid saw the end of David Beckham's Manchester United career, but he will be remembered as a legend.
4. Bryan Robson
Originally donning the number 11 shirt, Robson is another Manchester United legend that wore the number seven. Over the many years he spent at Old Trafford, Robson became a cult figure. He won many trophies and accolades at the club. After leading United to a second-successive title, Robson called time on his playing career. In the eyes of the supporters, he will be remembered as a legend and he remains the longest serving captain in the club's history.
3. Cristiano Ronaldo
As an 18-year-old, Ronaldo was snapped up by then-manager Sir Alex Ferguson. Shortly after joining, he was given the number seven shirt, something he believed he couldn't live up to. Over the seasons he spent at Old Trafford, he was a central figure in many Manchester United title wins. He was also a frontrunner for many personal awards too.
In 2009, Ronaldo was signed by Real Madrid for a world record fee. With rumours circulating he could be returning to Manchester United, could we witness the revival of his marvellous exploits as their number seven?
2. Eric Cantona
After the arrival of the Frenchman in 1992, Manchester United gave Cantona the illustrious number seven shirt. His first few seasons saw the side win the inaugural Premier League title and many more afterwards. Although controversy followed him around, Cantona didn't let it affect his performances for Manchester United, leading them to many trophies. At the age of 30, Cantona retired. His legacy will always be remembered and he will be adored for years to come.
1. George Best
Probably the greatest player on this list, and one of Manchester United's all-time best players. Although often associated with the number 11 shirt, it was with number seven that the Northern Irishman performed his best for the club. Breaking into the first team at the age of 17, Best became an instant hero for the fans and helped the club win the league title in 1965.
Over the following seasons, Best was the side's top scorer and best performer. He enjoyed unprecedented success at Manchester United and will always remain a legend at club.
Many players have worn the number seven shirt for Manchester United. Many cannot handle the pressure that comes with the number. But some thrive on the pressure and lead on and become club legends. With Manchester United's newest and biggest star Angel Di Maria, being given the shirt, could we see a new addition to this list of club legends? Only time will tell.
What do you think? Do you agree with this list? Perhaps you think I missed someone out? Comment below.
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