Man Utd: Michael Carrick's stunning Chelsea pass in 2013 proved he's a Premier League great

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Michael Carrick might just be the most underrated player in Premier League history.

When you consider just how crucial the former England midfielder proved to be for Manchester United under Sir Alex Ferguson, it's staggering to think of how little praise he actually receives.

While, sure, Carrick never reached the heights of Paul Scholes or Ryan Giggs, that doesn't mean he should fly under the radar so often when United's most recent Premier League titles are discussed.

Carrick's United achievements

Besides, it says everything that Carrick played more than 450 times for the Red Devils during a period in which they won five league titles, nine domestic cups and the Champions League.

Throw in the Europa League and FIFA Club World Cup for good measure and it doesn't take long to build up a remarkable impression of just how important Carrick was to United's modern success.

As Ferguson put it so simply in 2014 when talking to BT Sport: "I think Michael's the best central midfielder in English football. I think he's the best English player in the game."

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Remembering Carrick's brilliance

So, the moral of the story here is that Carrick knew one or two things about being a good footballer and we thought that it was only fair that we combatted his underrated status amongst fans.

In other words, we wanted to put one of his finest moments back under the spotlight and to do so, we're casting our minds back to Ferguson's final season at the 'Theatre of Dreams'.

More specifically, we're rewinding to the opening minutes of United's FA Cup Sixth Round clash at home to Chelsea and the time is ripe for a moment of magic from Mr. Carrick.

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Carrick's sublime assist vs Chelsea

With barely five minutes on the clock, Carrick unleashed a stunning long ball from midfield, which couldn't have picked out Javier Hernandez more accurately if he placed it with his hands.

And it's made all the more special by the fact that Carrick looked as though he really had to dig the ball out from his feet, finding a run that he had spotted mere seconds before getting his head down.

Naturally, Hernandez put the icing on the cake with a fine headed finish past Petr Cech, but make no mistake that it was all about Carrick's incredible vision, so be sure to enjoy it down below:

Now that, ladies and gentlemen, is what you call quality.

The Premier League's most underrated player?

So, sure, James Milner, Ledley King, Andy Cole and Jermain Defoe - to name just a few - can all lay claim to the equally desirable and undesirable title of the Premier League's most underrated player ever.

However, for us, you'd be hard pressed to look past Carrick when you factor in his status as a five-time champion of England, but one who is so infrequently credited among United's integral players.

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And when you consider that he produced stunning moments like his Chelsea assist alongside the less flashy work he had to do in United's midfield, it's all the more sad that he isn't routinely praised.

However, if reminiscing upon a glorious pass from Carrick helps to change that by just the smallest of margins then we're happy to help out because his midfield talent really was something special.

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