Manchester United: 10 Best Players in United History

Shawn ECorrespondent IISeptember 14, 2011

Manchester United: 10 Best Players in United History

0 of 10

    Manchester United Football Club was founded back in 1878 under the name Newton Heath LYR F.C. In 1902, the club's name was changed to Manchester United and the rest is history.

    No team has more English league titles than United, who surpassed Liverpool after securing their 19th last season. But titles cannot be won without great players, and United have had their fair share of talented footballers.

    Let's not waste any more time. Here are the 10 best players in Manchester United history.

10. Paul Scholes

1 of 10

    Kicking off the countdown at No. 10 is United's legendary midfielder Paul Scholes. Scholesy makes the cut primarily because of three factors: consistency, goal-scoring out of the midfield and the fact that he is a proven winner.

    In a game where players are plagued by injury year-in and year-out, Scholes made 25 or more appearances for United in 17 consecutive seasons. If that doesn't scream consistency, I don't know what does.

    Scholes won 22 trophies in his illustrious career at Old Trafford, including 10 Premier League titles.

9. Wayne Rooney

2 of 10

    At No. 9 is none other than Wazza. Although he currently sits at No. 9, Rooney will surely end up higher on the list when he retires from football.

    In 327 appearances for United, Rooney has bagged 155 goals. Rooney is ninth on United's all-time scoring list at the moment, but he's within striking distance of Ryan Giggs (159), Mark Hughes (163) and Joe Spence (168).

    If Rooney's goal-scoring form continues, he will surely catch Giggs, Hughes and Spence this season and may eventually dethrone Sir Bobby Charlton (249) as the Red Devils' top scorer of all-time.

8. Peter Schmeichel

3 of 10

    Arguably the greatest goalkeeper of all-time, former Danish international Peter Schmeichel is No. 8 on the list.

    Schmeichel made 398 appearances for United (1991-99) and even netted one goal for the Red Devils.

    Amongst many other accomplishments, Schmeichel was recognized as one of the top 10 goalkeepers of the 20th century by the International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS) in 2000.

7. Roy Keane

4 of 10

    No. 7 is former Republic of Ireland star Roy Keane.

    Keane made 480 appearances in the Red Devils midfield from 1993-2006, tallying 50 goals.

    The midfielder is also renown for taking the armband from Eric Cantona following the Frenchman's abrupt retirement.

6. Ryan Giggs

5 of 10

    At No. 6 is the ever-so-popular midfielder Ryan Giggs.

    Giggsy is currently eighth on United's all-time scoring list with 159 goals and has made a club record 879 appearances. He made his debut for the Red Devils back in 1990 and hasn't stopped tearing apart defences ever since.

    Earlier this year, Giggs was named United's greatest player ever in a worldwide poll conducted by ManUtd.com, the club's official website.

5. Denis Law

6 of 10

    Former Scotland striker Denis Law is No. 5 on the list. Law spent over a decade with the Red Devils (1962-1973). In that time, he 171 goals in 309 appearances for the club.

    Law is the epitome of a "living legend." Law is depicted on the "United Trinity" statue outside of Old Trafford alongside legends Sir Bobby Charlton and George Best.

4. Eric Cantona

7 of 10

    United striker Eric Cantona settles in at No. 4. Despite spending only five seasons at United, Cantona is indeed an automatic top-10 selection.

    The Frenchman appeared 185 times for the Red Devils, bagging 82 goals in all competitions.

    During his five seasons, Cantona won nine trophies, including winning the Premier League title four times.

3. Cristiano Ronaldo

8 of 10

    The immensely talented Cristiano Ronaldo is No. 3 on the list.

    The only reason Ronaldo is not higher on the list is because of the way he left United. Other than that, he is the best player to ever put on the Manchester United jersey and arguably one of the all-time great talents in world football.

    From 2003-09 Ronaldo made 292 appearances for the Red Devils, scoring an impressive 118 goals.

2. Sir Bobby Charlton

9 of 10

    The infamous Sir Bobby Charlton stands in at No. 2 on the list.

    The former England international scored 249 goals for United, a club record. Charlton was usually featured as an attacking midfielder for the Red Devils and is infamous for his tantalizing long-range shots.

    As fans of football, we were spoiled by Sir Bobby Charlton's excellence on the pitch and to think that his career and life could have ended in his second season is mind numbing. Charlton was one of 21 who survived the Munich air disaster of 1958, and thankfully so. 

1. George Best

10 of 10

    George Best concludes the list of the United's best players of all-time at No. 1.

    Best's amazing career with United earned him global recognition. His 179 goals rank fourth on the Red Devils all-time list of goals scored.

    Had Best not suffered from alcoholism, he could have been even better. Best passed away at 59 years old on 25 November 2005 after health complications caused by alcoholism.

    Let's all take a moment to remember George Best and what he did for the game of football.

     

    Be sure to follow Shawn on Twitter: @etemadis