It would seem time isn’t always a great healer after all, at least not when it comes to old foes Alan Shearer and Roy Keane.
Shearer was asked to name his Premier League all-time XI for the Sunday Mirror and there wasnt even a place for the most successful skipper in the EPL’s history on the bench.
To be fair to the former Blackburn and Newcastle striker, he can hardly be accused of anti-United bias with no less than six of the XI chosen being Old Trafford legends plus Sir Alex Ferguson installed as manager.
Keane who famously took a swing at Shearer during a game at St James’s Park- and then said his only regret was that he missed- was the only glaring ommission from the 18 players chosen for the squad.
Here’s Shearer’s choices and the reasons behind them:
Peter Schmeichel: His sheer presence was incredible. The fact that he was there inspired his back four. Schmeichel was very good at everything he did and that gave the rest of the Manchester United side confidence.
Gary Neville: He might not have been everyone’s cup of tea but he did a great job throughout a distinguished career with Manchester United and England. A superb pro who was one of the most reliable defenders in the game.
“Tony Adams: A great leader and like John Terry a no-nonsense centre half. Clearing the danger in front of him was always his top priority.
“John Terry: Just like Tony Adams in what he gives a team. Like Tony Adams he is what I would call a proper defender. People in the game will know what I am talking about.
“Ashley Cole: A great modern day player. He can attack and defend in equal proportions. One of the best in the world at what he does.
Steven Gerrard: Another great leader who inspires his colleagues by example. Always puts a shift in. He scores goals at vital times and can be relied to get 10 or 15 goals in a season.
Paul Scholes: The first name I thought of for the midfield positions. He is excellent at the vast majority of skills he needs in that position. His passing, heading, energy, and ability to come up with a goal make him one of the best around.
“Ryan Giggs. He has to be in the side. A superb pro whose Premier League record is testimony to his ability to produce the goods season after season. A fabulous servant to Man United and a player of remarkable consistency.
Gianfranco Zola: I played with him a month ago in a seven-a-side tournament and I could see that he still has that unbelievable ability. I’ve picked him as a withdrawn striker, in the hole behind the front two. He could win or change a game with a moment of genius.
“Eric Cantona: He is a stand-out for me like Wayne Rooney. There is so much talent and so many options in the striking positions but he was totally unique. A player who genuinely commands the title of genius.
“Wayne Rooney: The most valuable quality is that he can win games on his own. A very good strike rate and I believe he is one of the best three or four players in the world.
David Seaman, Stuart Pearce, David Beckham, Dennis Bergkamp, Thierry Henry
Sir Alex Ferguson: The manager picks himself. His record which boasts 12 Premier League titles says everything about the man. He has been absolutely incredible. No other manager comes close.”
Not a terrible list although, I’d replace Cole with Denis Irwin, Adams and Terry with Jaap Stam and Gary Pallister, Gerrard with Keano and Zola with Cristiano Ronaldo!