Gary Neville admits he had to move to right-back to have Man Utd career

Gary Neville has admitted switching position to right-back is the only reason he had a career at Man Utd.

The former Red Devils defender came through the club’s academy as part of the fabled ‘Class of ’92’ along with brother Phil , Ryan Giggs, David Beckham , Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt.

He went on to enjoy serious success in the first team, winning eight Premier League titles and the Champions League twice in the process.

But it was during his time in the United youth team that Neville found his position under threat, and was forced to make a change.

“I was a central midfield player at Manchester United as a 12, 13, 14-year-old,” Neville told Sky Sports . “Then David Beckham, Nicky Butt and Paul Scholes joined and all of a sudden, I was a right-back.



A Man Utd career would have been unlikely had Neville not moved to right-back

“I thought ‘oh dear, I’ve got a bit of a problem here because there are some talented players that are a different level of talent than I am’.

“They joined the club and I thought I better find a new position.

“The club moved me to centre-back initially and then because of my height, and Steve Bruce and Gary Pallister in the first team, they moved me to right-back because Paul Parker had been picking up some injuries.



Neville (3R) earned success alongside the Class of ’92 in the United first team

“So I had to adapt over years and, to be honest, beggars cannot be choosers, so I was happy wherever I was as long as I was in the team.”

Neville started and finished his career at Old Trafford, and ranks 5th highest on United’s list of all-time appearance makers.

Only Giggs, Scholes and club greats Bobby Charlton and Bill Foulkes have accumulated more than his tally of over 600.



He went on to make over 600 appearances for the club

Read More

Mirror Football’s Top Stories

But despite his success, Neville was adamant that a career as a professional sportsman was not a guarantee for him and his brother.

He added: “With a good work ethic and passion for sport, we developed enough talent to play football at a high level, but we weren’t born with it.

“We weren’t gracing the fields of Bury or anything like that, there weren’t people coming to watch us train on a Monday night thinking that we were going to be big.”

source.