Manchester United legend Gary Neville has named Wayne Rooney as the best centre-forward he played with at the club.
The former England international has just retired from playing to become manager of Derby County, and Neville has paid tribute to the retiring legend.
Rooney finished his Man Utd career as the club’s all-time leading scorer, as well as the leading scorer for the England national team, so there’s no doubt he’s up there with the modern greats.
That said, United have had a number of other elite forwards in their recent history, with Cristiano Ronaldo, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Andrew Cole and Dwight Yorke among the best.
Neville has singled out Rooney, however, and few could argue with his assessment of the 35-year-old as he named the long list of reasons he ranks him the highest of all.
“For me he was the best centre-forward I ever saw at Manchester United and ever played with,” Neville told Sky Sports, as quoted by the Metro.
“I have him number one, up front, Cristiano Ronaldo alongside him in every single of the best Manchester United teams that I played alongside.
“That’s the highest compliment I can pay him, because I played with [Eric] Cantona, with [Mark] Hughes, with [Dwight] Yorke, [Andy] Cole, [Teddy] Sheringham, [Ole Gunnar] Solskjaer, [Dimitar] Berbatov, [Carlos] Tevez, great strikers from all over the world, not just in England.
“Rooney would be my number one. The contribution to the team at all points of every game was unbelievable.
“In and out of possession, in the dressing room, the energy every single morning.
“He was an absolute livewire, street fighter, tough, score goals, assist goals, the best defender, never give in.
“Everything you would want in a footballer he was there, and to me the best striker I played with because he did everything.”
Rooney spent 13 years at United, scoring 253 goals for the club and winning five Premier League titles, the Champions League and numerous other major honours.