Born in Enniskillen, Roy Carroll began his goalkeeping career at Fivemiletown United and Ballinamallard United before joining Hull City in the spring of 1995. After making 46 league outings for The Tigers, the young netminder left Boothferry Park for Wigan Athletic for a then club record fee of £350,000 at the end of the 1996–97 campaign.
A Paris native, Louis Saha kick started his professional footballing career with French First Division team FC Metz where he recorded five goals in 47 league appearances. In the summer of 2000, the young striker eventually decided to team up with Fulham whom he helped win promotion to the English Premier League the following year.
Following a 3–1 victory in the first leg, Manchester United once again put up an astonishing display by demolishing League of Ireland side Waterford to the tune of 7–1 at Old Trafford in October 1968. The Blues were well up for the challenge and fought hard in the first period but they ran completely out of gas after the half time break.
Jim Leighton started out at Aberdeen where he won every domestic honour under the shrewd guidance of manager Alex Ferguson. Arguably, the greatest achievements of his career were the European Cup Winner’s Cup triumph against Real Madrid in Gothenburg in May 1983 and the Super Cup win over Hamburg later the same year.
Hailing from North Brabant, Ruud van Nistelrooy started out his goal scoring career with Den Bosch in 1993. After contributing 13 league hits 31 outings during the 1996–97 campaign, the natural born hit man went on to appear for Heerenveen before he decided to team up with ambitious PSV Eindhoven at the end of the 1997-08 season.
Born in Bury, Gary Neville debuted for Manchester United in a goalless draw with Coventry City at Old Trafford in May 1994. As a right fullback, Neville made well over 500 appearances for Manchester United during his 18 years at the club, winning eight Premier League titles, three FA Cups, two League Cups and one European Cup.
Nicky Butt joined local team Manchester United straight from school and made his debut in a 3–0 win at home to Oldham Athletic in November 1992. While at the club, he made 269 league outings and earned six English Premier League title winner’s medals, three FA Cup winner’s medals and a Champions League winner’s medal.
Steve Coppell began at local side Tranmere Rovers where he proceeded to play 38 league matches. Blessed with dazzling skills and electrifying pace, he was regarded as one of the most talented players to appear on the soccer stage for years and was eventually brought to Manchester United for a bargain £45,000 in February 1975.
Dublin born Johnny Giles was discovered by Manchester United scout Billy Behan while playing schoolboy soccer for his local team Stella Maris Football Club. The Dubliner rapidly matured into a fine subtle midfield playmaker and would sign his first professional contract with Manchester United at the comparatively young age of fifteen.
Gordon Hill began his rollercoaster career with Millwall where he emerged as a promising outside left under the indulgent stewardship of Benny Fenton. After spending the summer of 1975 appearing for North American Soccer League Chicago Sting, the talented winger made a move to Manchester United for a transfer fee of £70,000.