Manchester United Greatest Xl vs Ajax Greatest Xl: Who Would Win?

Two sides with great European pedigree face each other in the Europa League but if you matched their finest players who would come out top?
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Two sides with great European pedigree face each other in the Europa League but if you matched their finest players who would come out top?

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Ajax Greatest Xl v Manchester United Greatest Xl: who wins?

Ajax’s Greatest XI

Goalkeeper
Edwin van der Sar: Dutch record international. Keeps it simple. Always on the right spot. 9

Right back
Willem Suurbier: Innovative attacking defender with great pace. 8

Centre back
Frank Rijkaard: Energetic defender or midfielder with immense power. 9

Centre back
Frank de Boer: Not quick but a great touch and a spectacular long pass. 7

Left back
Ruud Krol: Ahead of his time as a stylish libero. Started as a left back. 9

Midfield
Johan Neeskens: Quintessential hard man, who surge into the box to score. 9

Midfield
Edgar Davids: The Pitbull, who would never give up. Filling all the gaps. 9

Midfield
Johan Cruyff: Excellent technique paired with a quick mind and great moves.10

Forward
Dennis Bergkamp: Almost every goal he scored was a beauty. 9

Forward
Marco van Basten: Powerful, sometimes nasty topscorer who had everything a striker needs. 10

Forward
Piet Keizer: Sensational ball control with a deadly shot. 9

Ajax Total: 90

Manchester United Greatest XI

GK: Peter Schmeichel – Signed as a virtual unknown in 1991, his size, prodigious throwing and mammoth kicks immediately marked him down as something very different. As much the first point of attack as last line of defence. After an early roughing up from Wimbledon’s Crazy Gang he quickly toughened up and went on to become United’s greatest ever. “Prone to the odd error” critics may point out, but when he saved as many games as he did during a season, who cares? 9

RB: Roger Byrne – Local lad who was captain and elder statesman of the incomparable Busby Babes. Perhaps not the best technically but more than made up for any deficiency with his reading of the game. An England regular, fatefully he never made it to the 1958 World Cup. 7

CB: Martin Buchan – “The Fonz is cool but Buchan is cooler” ran the Stretford End’s chant, summing up the ice-cool nature of United’s best ever defender. Having just the one FA Cup to show for his time at Old Trafford is a criminal return for a player who was almost as integral to the team in the ‘70s as Robson was in the ‘80s. 8

LB: Denis Irwin – Incredibly underrated player who, after a somewhat inauspicious start after his arrival from Oldham, went on to become the club’s most consistent and decorated player of the 1990s. Also weighed in with more than his fair share of goals. 7

RM: Cristiano Ronaldo – From 2006–2009 he was as dominant a presence in United’s team as any of his predecessors. His goals dragged the side to a hat-trick of titles and successive European Cup finals – he was well worthy of the 2008 Ballon d’Or. Probably the first player on whom United supporters could legitimately bestow the title “best player in the world”. 9

CM: Duncan Edwards – Many young players are hyped up beyond justification, yet anyone wondering whether the recognition Edwards received is truly justified for a player who died when only 21 years old only has to consider the range and knowledge of those within the game who cite him as one of the game’s true greats.10

CM: Bryan Robson – The rock on which Atkinson’s United was built, his absences to injury were the reason Ron’s team so often failed. The phrase ‘one-man team’ is self-evidently an exaggeration when applied in a team sport, but with Robson it was as close to reality as it could come. 8

CM: Roy Keane – The driving force behind Ferguson’s greatest side, he continually set the tone for the team, whether through his metronomic passing, fearsome tackling, lung-busting effort or never-say-die determination. A winner amongst winners, the rock on which the 1999 Treble was won. 8

LM: George Best – The one, the only. Playing alongside both him and Ronaldo would probably have had Charlton tearing out what little remained of his once-flowing blonde locks but it would’ve been worth it. There’d probably have to be two balls on the pitch, mind. 10

CF: Bobby Charlton – Still holds the record for the most starts and goals of any United player. No ‘rests’ for this stalwart despite countless battles on the bogs that passed for pitches in the 1950s and ‘60s. As two-footed as they come, he could play anywhere in midfield or attack. Officially acknowledged as the continent’s best player in 1966, he’s one of only three Englishmen to win the European and World Cups. 10

CF: Denis Law – Often the overlooked member of United’s Holy Trinity but back in the day was the Stretford End’s favourite, its very own King. And with good reason. Fearless, brave and aggressive, he played as the fans would like to. Scored every sort of goal, from 20-yard headers to acrobatic overhead kicks to six yard tap-ins. Ballon d’Or winner in 1964, he regularly topped the scoring charts before injuries started to take their toll on his slender frame. 10

Manchester United Total: 95

Ajax 90 v 95 Manchester United

A rousing five point victory by United for the sheer quality of the attacking players to have graced Old Trafford, and there's no real surprise that none of the current side make it.

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