Gary Neville put Liverpool and Arsenal at opposite ends of the spectrum when asked who he’d have signed for if he ever left Manchester United during his playing days.
Gary Neville was a one-club man in his playing career. The former right-back amassed over 600 first-team appearances for the club in a trophy-laden 19-year spell at Old Trafford.
And speaking to Sky Sports’ Off Script Podcast, Neville spoke about which sides he would’ve considered playing for if United ever made the decision to cut him loose.
Neville namechecked United’s biggest rivals Liverpool. He also mentioned arguably the greatest opposing side he faced on the domestic front during his career – Arsenal.
And while he was full of praise for the Gunners, he was predictably quick to shut down any hypothetical chances of seeing him at Anfield.
“You can rule out three,” Neville said (via the Mirror). “I’d have never have played for [Manchester] City, Liverpool or Leeds. Not in a million years.
“I don’t feel anything bad towards the players who did that, but me personally, I couldn’t have done it. The rivalry is just too much.
“If you’d said to me, in a perfect world, in my years of playing, which clubs in the Premier League have the tradition, a proper club?
“Arsenal would be No 1. The tradition of Highbury, I felt they did things the right way. Also in the Premier League, I like Aston Villa and Newcastle.”
Neville then turned his attention to overseas clubs, and picked out both an Italian and German side he’d liked to have played for.
“In Europe I admired Juventus and Bayern Munich,” Neville continued. “I respected them as football clubs.
“Bayern were meticulous in their preparation, so internationally, it would be them.”
Neville would’ve walked if Sir Alex swung the axe
But despite his admiration for both Bayern and Juventus, Neville revealed he never once contemplated leaving his boyhood club.
Furthermore, he claimed if Sir Alex Ferguson had axed him in his early 30s, he would’ve gone into retirement early.
“My longest contract negotiation was three meetings. They were normally done inside one or two meetings, and they were always long contracts,” Neville continued.
“I’d made the decision quite early in my 30s that if Sir Alex had come and told me my time was up, I wouldn’t have played for anyone else. I was fortunate in that sense.
“However, if he’d come to me at say the age of 28, and told me my time was up, of course I would have played for another Premier League club.”