Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger has paid tribute to Gary Neville after the Manchester United defender announced his retirement from football.
Wenger, who has managed Arsenal in a host of bad tempered matches against Neville, said praised the veteran full-backs “consistency”, “motivation” and “intelligence” which made up for his lack of talent.
The Frenchman told Arsenal’s official website: “I respect a lot of what he has done because he was certainly not one of the most talented players in the league but what he has achieved is consistency.
“His record is down to intelligence and motivation – he is an example to players who are maybe less gifted than the Giggs and the Beckhams but still make a fantastic career because they are intelligent and highly-motivated. They deserve a great credit.
“(He was the) best English right back, certainly – if you look at his record, he has won absolutely everything and the number of games he has played, he is without a doubt the best.”
Neville made his debut for United in 1992, coming into the senior team with the likes of David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt and his brother, Phil.
He played an amazing 602 games for United, notching just six goals. But what he lacked in goals, he made up for in trophies, winning eight Premier League titles and picking up a Champions League medal.
He also represented England 85 times and is regarded as one of the nation’s best ever full-backs.
Following a series of injuries and the emergence of young Brazilian Rafael Da Silva, Neville has now called time on his career.
The former England right-back, 35, yesterday said: “I have been a Manchester United fan all my life and fulfilled every dream I’ve ever had.
“Obviously I am disappointed that my playing days are at an end, however it comes to us all, and it’s knowing when that time is and for me that time is now.”
Is Gary Neville the Premier League’s best ever right-back? Leave your comment below