Barcelona midfielder and legend Xavi Hernandez has come up against several Manchester United players during his time in Spain and picked several of them in his all-time British XI for shortlist.com earlier this week.
Rio Ferdinand, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and current United player and captain Wayne Rooney all made the team meaning Old Trafford’s own made up over 1/3 of the team.
Xavi picked his team ahead of Monday’s draw for the Champions League second round and helped his Barcelona team mates take top spot in their group with a win over PSG earlier this week.
Speaking about his first pick, Rio Ferdinand, the midfielder said he saw qualities in the current QPR man that he appreciated as Barcelona player.
Former United legends Giggs and Scholes came in for different types of praise from the Spanish international who clearly appreciates the achievements Giggs managed playing for one club all his career.
“I recently equalled his record for Champions League appearances with one club, and it shows the class of the man to publicly congratulate me. What impressed me most was that as he got older, he adapted his game. Only the most intelligent players are capable of that.”
Meanwhile, Paul Scholes was included as according to Xavi he is ‘technically the best English player since Matt Le Tissier’.
Wayne Rooney was the final United player and the only current one to make Xavi’s XI and it shows despite his critics, Rooney is clearly still appreciate among his colleagues.
“Wayne was very complimentary about the way Barcelona play. He would have fitted into our style of play no problem, but Manchester United would never have wanted to let one of the best players in the world leave. He’s still the player who makes things happen for them.”