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Patrice Evra’s best XI of Man Utd and Juventus team-mates has controversial absences


Patrice Evra opted to axe Manchester United ’s record goalscorer Wayne Rooney and iconic centre-half Nemanja Vidic from his ultimate XI of former team-mates.

The five-time Premier League winner picked eight players from his Old Trafford days as well as three Juventus stars.

Sir Alex Ferguson was the obvious option selected to manage the side, which Evra chose while on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football.

Following Arsenal’s 1-0 defeat at Sheffield United in the Premier League, the legendary left-back revealed his best XI.

In goal, Edwin Van der Sar got the nod ahead of the likes of Gianluigi Buffon and David de Gea.

The Dutchman was pivotal to United’s 2009 Champions League triumph, and Evra said: “Van der Sar is the only goalkeeper in the world who, when he makes a save, doesn’t shout at his defenders.

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“He was the captain of the defence, he was really calm, always talking to us and he was always in the right position.”

The only other defensive inclusion from the Red Devils, beyond himself, proved to be Rio Ferdinand.

Vidic missed out as a result with Ferdinand lining up in Evra’s team alongside Giorgio Chiellini, who has been a top performer at the back for the Old Lady since 2005.

At right-back, Dani Alves made the cut ahead of Sky Sports pundit and co-commentator Gary Neville.

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Right-back Gary Neville was unlucky not to make Patrice Evra’s team

The decision to omit Neville certainly went down well with on-screen partner Jamie Carragher, who was with Evra in the studio.

Evra explained: “I could have had Gary Neville, but Dani Alves is more talented! I love Gary and he was a consistent right-back, but Dani Alves is different quality.”

Moving into midfield, three out of four came from United with Andrea Pirlo the only alternative choice from Juventus in the centre.

Despite spells with Monaco, Marseille and West Ham, the former France international stuck largely with United, and understandably so given their success during his time in Manchester between 2006 and 2014.

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Fulham v Manchester United – FA Cup 6th Round March 2009 LONDON – MARCH 09: Carlos Tevez (2nd L) of Manchester United celebrates with team mates Anderson, Ji-Sung Park, Patrice Evra and Rio Ferdinand after scoring the first goal of the FA Cup sponsored by E.on 6th round match between Fulham and Manchester United at Craven Cottage on March 7, 2009 in London, England. (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)

Long-term servants Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs, who both dedicated their entire playing careers to United, made Evra’s team.

And he also picked fan-favourite Park Ji-Sung as a surprise inclusion, but the South Korean earned his place.

Evra said: ‘“He was a soldier. The 2008 Champions League semi-final against Barcelona, in both legs, he was man of the match. He didn’t play the final after that but he is definitely one of my soldiers.”

On Scholes and Giggs, he added: “When I joined Man Utd, a lot of people asked me who impressed me the most and people were always expecting me to say Wayne Rooney or Cristiano Ronaldo, but Giggs and Scholes were just amazing. They were role models.”

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Finally up front, Cristiano Ronaldo was controversially partnered by Carlos Tevez.

Eva admitted: “This one was a tough choice, Tevez or Wayne Rooney? But it comes from my heart, even if I am a close friend to Wayne.

“I played with Tevez in Manchester and Juventus, and what a player. He is a warrior and when we had him and Wayne up front, I was feeling sorry for the defenders.”

Evra’s XI (4-4-2): Van Der Sar; Evra, Chiellini, Ferdinand, Alves; Giggs, Pirlo, Scholes, Park; Tevez, Ronaldo



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