Vidic left United in 2014.

Nemanja Vidic hated playing against one striker more than Fernando Torres

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Nemanja Vidic is widely regarded as one of Manchester United's - and the Premier League's - greatest ever centre-backs.

Passionate, courageous and hardworking, the Serbian was a complete defender and led by example at Old Trafford, helping the Red Devils along to five Premier League titles and the Champions League in 2008.

United will do very well to find a worthy successor to someone who, by and large, is irreplaceable.


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Two years on from his departure and Vidic has shed some light on the highs and lows of his career at the Theatre of Dreams, even admitting that he came close to joining rivals Liverpool.

A particular topic of interest in a recent interview with FourFourTwo, though, was the striker he hated playing against most.

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Fernando Torres would be most people's guess but, according to the 34-year-old, they would be wrong.

He said: "[Didier] Drogba was tougher. Torres always created a chance to score, but Drogba was on you for the full game.

"People say: 'You had a difficult game against Torres', but it was just the one game. I went to head the ball but changed my mind and tried to pass to Edwin [van der Sar]. I misjudged the distance and Torres scored.

"Drogba was physically the hardest; [Luis] Suarez and [Sergio] Aguero were the best.

FA Cup Final: Manchester United v Chelsea

"Drogba would be even better if he didn’t get so many injuries. They were the top three I played against."

Vidic - renowned for his hardman approach - was then asked how he would play against someone of Diego Costa's mentality and physicality.

"How would I deal with Costa today? I'd deal with him like I did the others. You are what you are and I played my own game against everyone," he added.

Well, there you go.

As mentioned, Vidic almost signed for Liverpool but was convinced otherwise by none other than Sir Alex Ferguson.

Manchester United manager Sir Alex Fergu

Asked if he came close, the Serbian said: "Yes. Rafa Benitez called me and I nearly went there. I was interested in going but my English wasn't good and I was struggling to communicate.

"Then Manchester United came. Fergie called me at my apartment and said: 'I watched you play for Serbia against France - I want you here'.

"United were decisive. Everything was done very quickly, within two days."

And to think, it could have all been so different.

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Wayne Rooney
Manchester United
UEFA Champions League
Nemanja Vidic
Fernando Torres
Premier League
Cristiano Ronaldo

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