David Beckham and Cristiano Ronaldo are two of the greatest players to ever grace the game, much alone the Manchester United surface.
And former Manchester United captain Gary Neville had the good fortune to play alongside both superstars during his 19-year Old Trafford career – Beckham from 1992 to 2003 and Ronaldo from 2003 to 2009 – winning numerous championships with the pair over two decades.
Neville was a right-back for Manchester United and formed a fantastic on-and-off-the-field partnership with Beckham, allowing them to communicate telepathically on the football ground to devastating effect.
When Beckham departed United for Real Madrid in 2003, the defender had to adjust his game, with a young and inexperienced Ronaldo arriving at Old Trafford to take the number seven shirt and fill the Englishman’s boots.
Although Neville and Ronaldo were unable to form a bond equal to that which the right-back had with Beckham, the Portuguese was a different player and appeared to get along fine without the help of his teammate.
Neville previously told Sky Sports that when asked who was the better footballer to play alongside, he said: “Well, I’ve never seen Ronaldo, and Beckham was a better player to play with because he actually did.
“One of the things about Ronaldo was that he was never in front of you. When he was present, you could do a bunch of dummy runs around the back of him. He was a fantastic player who could play anywhere on the front line.
“Obviously, the partnership with David Beckham was something exceptional. Ronaldo, on the other hand, was simply great during his two or three years at Old Trafford.”
In 2009, Ronaldo followed in Beckham’s footsteps, leaving Manchester United for Real Madrid. Neville stayed at Old Trafford for another two years before hanging up his boots and joining Sky Sports as a football pundit.