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Top 10 Manchester United Flops Who Starred After Old Trafford

10) Jonathan Greening

A talented midfielder, Greening had a mammoth task to dislodge the likes of Roy Keane and Paul Scholes when he joined the Red Devils in 1998. Incredibly, he picked up a Champions League medal with United in 1999 as he was among the substitutes in their 2-1 win over Bayern Munich despite not playing a single minute in the competition. After a handful of appearances in three years he moved to Middlesbrough and later West Bromwich Albion, where he became club captain. Presently on loan with Fulham.


9) Jordi Cruyff

After impressing in Euro 96 with the Netherlands, he left his father and Barcelona for Old Trafford when the tournament was over. As he struggled with injuries, he was never a first team regular but crafted out a decent career for himself in Spain playing for Alaves when he returned to the Iberian peninsula in 2000. Still playing these days in Malta for Valletta.


8) Tim Howard

One of many who tried to fill Peter Schmeichel's shoes between the sticks. Had a decent first season, though will probably be remembered best for his gaffe against Porto in 2004 which led to United's dramatic Champions League elimination. Has shown the kind of form with Everton in recent seasons which made Fergie splash out on him in the first place.


7) Dion Dublin

Had Dublin not broken his leg early in his United career the Red Devils may not have bought Eric Cantona, meaning Premier League history would look rather different. The lanky striker began well with United in 1992-93 but got injured early in the season and by the time he recovered he was a fringe player at best. Left in 1994 for Coventry, where he scored hatfulls of goals and was a vital player for Aston Villa during their unlikely title tilt in 1998-99. He also picked up four England caps.

6) Mark Bosnich

Yes, you did read that right. Bosnich was on United's books for three years before he returned in 1999 via Aston Villa. Unable to secure a work permit, Bosnich was snapped up by the Villans and was one of the Premier League's top shot stoppers throughout the 90s. His return to Old Trafford in 1999 was disappointing and a succession of personal problems led to his care petering out.


5) Juan Sebastian Veron

Widely regarded as Alex Ferguson's biggest flop, the brilliant Argentinian failed to live up to his expensive price tag in two largely fruitless seasons. United did some good business on him by flogging Veron to Chelsea, where he scored on his debut against Liverpool. Has rediscovered his best form back home with his local club Estudiantes, and at 35 looks a certainty for Diego Maradona's World Cup squad.


4) David Platt

The future England captain was another who slipped through United's ranks after spending three years there as an apprentice without making a first team appearance. Dug deep at Crewe Alexandra before reaching the heady heights in Serie A with Bari, Juventus and Sampdoria. Came back to haunt his old club with a winning header for Arsenal in the Gunners' memorable 3-2 win in his final double-winning season at the club in 1997-98.


3) Gerard Pique

It would be incredibly harsh to label Pique a 'flop'. After all, he arrived at Old Trafford when he was barely out of nappies and when he was given first team opportunities he showed his ability to good effect. Dislodging Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic was never going to be easy and the Catalan returned to the Camp Nou in 2008 to win a truckload of trophies. One that definitely got away.


2) Diego Forlan

United fought off competition from Middlesbrough to bring in the Uruguyan hot shot in 2002. Took an age to score his first goal in the red shirt and by the time he did -  27 games later - it was from the penalty spot. Will be fondly remembered by United fans for his double against Liverpool at Anfield in 2002. The striker has been consistently among the goals since moving to La Liga in 2004, scoring for fun with Villarreal and now Atletico Madrid, and winning the European Golden Shoe on two occasions.

1) Peter Beardsley


Spent seven months with United early in his career and had just a single League Cup appearance to show for it. Beardsley was let go by Ron Atkinson to play in Canada but returned to English shores to star for Newcastle United in two spells and enjoy considerable success with United's deadly rivals Liverpool. He scored a brilliant hat-trick for the Reds against his old club in a 4-0 demolition at Anfield in 1990. Always creeps up in quiz questions as he represented United, Liverpool, Everton and Manchester City in his long career. Often forgotten in the lists of great players, Beardsley was unstoppable during his prime.



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