Sir Alex Ferguson names the four world-class players he managed at Manchester United

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Sir Alex Ferguson managed hundreds of talented players during his 26-year spell as Manchester United manager - but the Scot believes only four of them were truly world class.

Ferguson named Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, Eric Cantona and Cristiano Ronaldo as the best players he ever managed in terms of pure footballing brilliance, according to BBC Sport.

"They made the difference and the evidence is there," Ferguson, now 73, told Dan Walker on Football Focus.


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Ferguson described Ronaldo, who he managed at Old Trafford between 2003 and 2009, as a “complete genius of a player”.

He also hailed Giggs and Scholes for their “longevity” and reserved special praise for Cantona, who was described as “the catalyst” behind Manchester United winning the Premier League title in 1993.

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Ferguson reserves praise for six others

Many Manchester United fans will be surprised that Ferguson believes he only managed four truly world-class players during his two-and-a-half decades in charge of the Red Devils.

The legendary Scot also named six other stars he considered “great players” - but feels they fell marginally short of the heights scaled by the aforementioned quartet.

Roy Keane, Rio Ferdinand, Peter Schmeichel, David Beckham, Wayne Rooney and, unexpectedly, Carlos Tevez all received honourable mentions from their ex-boss.

Ferguson puts grudges to one side

Ferguson famously fell out with at least four of those players during his time at Manchester United - Keane, Beckham, Rooney and Tevez - so a couple of them might feel a little surprised to have received a mention.

The mention of Tevez, in particular, is a shock. The Argentina international never appeared to fully win the trust of Ferguson, and left Old Trafford for rivals Manchester City in 2009 after his two-year loan with Manchester United came to an end.

Manchester United fans: did any other former or current Reds deserve to make Sir Alex Ferguson’s list of world-class players? Have your say by leaving a comment in the box below!

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Premier League
Alex Ferguson
Eric Cantona
Manchester United
Cristiano Ronaldo
Wayne Rooney
Paul Scholes
Ryan Giggs

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