Select a team

Top Tens

Top Ten - Utd and City

Rate It:
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

Ahead of Sunday's Manchester derby, Chris Burton looks at a selection of those who have represented both United and City

Sunday afternoon will see Manchester pride put on the line as United and City go head-to-head at Old Trafford.

One of the most eagerly-anticipated fixtures of the season, there promises to be fireworks when these two old adversaries go head-to-head.

There is certainly no love lost between the neighbouring clubs, with the two having been at each other's throats for over a century.

Over the years there have been a number of memorable games, and moments, while certain players have become cult heroes following their exploits on derby day.

Unsurprisingly, given the stature of the two sides, there have also been a number of players down the years who have turned out in both red and blue at different stages of their career.

Argentine striker Carlos Tevez was the latest to cross the Manchester divide when he left the Theatre of Dreams for Eastlands this summer, but the stocky South American is by no means the first big name to have explored whether the grass really is greener on the other side.

Billy Meredith

It is fair to say that there will be few, if any, United and City supporters who had the pleasure of seeing Meredith perform in his pomp. A legendary centre forward during the late 19th century, the Welshman is regarded as a hero on both sides of Manchester. He spent 12 productive years with the Blues between 1894 and 1906, winning the FA Cup in 1904, before being snapped up by United. His time with the Red Devils, which spanned 15 years, saw him collect two League titles and another FA Cup winners' medal. He returned to City in 1921, where he remained until he hung up his boots at the grand old age of 49. An interesting side note to Meredith's career is that he made the vast majority of his appearances with a toothpick hanging out of his mouth, making his success all the more remarkable given that he ran the risk of sustaining a nasty throat injury every time he took to the field!

Denis Law

An all-time Manchester United great, Law's exploits for the Red Devils overshadow his time spent with their arch-rivals. The Scot is the second highest goalscorer in United's illustrious history, while he has been immortalised in a statue outside Old Trafford - along with former team-mates George Best and Bobby Charlton. Law did in fact play for City before United, having spent a year at Maine Road at the start of the 1960s. A brief spell in Italy with Torino followed, before he returned to Manchester with United in 1962. Nine glorious years in the famous red shirt helped to establish his legend status, as he helped the club to two League titles and an FA Cup win, while he was also named European Footballer of the Year in 1964. Law rejoined City in 1973, where he would play just the one season before calling time on his career. His last act in a blue jersey was to score a nonchalant backheel at Old Trafford, which he feared at the time had consigned his former employers to relegation - but it was later proved not to have done.

Wyn Davies

The second Welshman on our list, Davies is perhaps not as widely hailed around Manchester as the two men who have preceded him. He was a forward of some repute in his day, with an explosive start to his career seeing him enjoy prolific spells at Wrexham, Bolton and Newcastle. Wyn was snapped up by City in 1971, but was unable to replicate his goalscoring heroics at Maine Road. He spent just a year with the Blues before making the short trek across town to join United. His strike rate increased marginally at Old Trafford, but he found first-team opportunities hard to come by. He was on the move again in 1973, but would never scale the heights he achieved during his days prior to moving to Manchester.

Brian Kidd

Kidd is a rarity in our look at those who have been associated with both City and United, as he has been on the books of both as a player and as a coach. He began his career as a starry-eyed youngster with the Red Devils in the 1960s, and would take in nine years and over 200 appearances for the club before moving on to Arsenal. Two years in the capital followed before he headed back up north in 1976 to join City. His keen eye for goal made him something of a fans' favourite with the Blues, despite his ties with United. Upon calling it day, Kidd moved into caching and soon returned to Old Trafford to work with the club's youngsters. He was then promoted to assistant manager in 1991 and stood alongside Sir Alex Ferguson as the modern United dynasty was born. He has since gone on to take managerial roles of his own, but is currently back working within the academy system under Mark Hughes at Eastlands.

Peter Barnes

Local boy made good Barnes started his career with hometown club City in the mid-70s. Handed his debut as a talented youngster, Barnes would go on to score in the 1976 League Cup final while still a teenager. His promise, and ability to score crucial goals, did not go unnoticed though and he was snapped up by West Brom for a club record fee in 1979. Short spells at Leeds, Real Betis and Coventry followed, before he joined United in 1985. He was forced to perform back-up duties to Jesper Olsen for much of his time at Old Trafford, while a falling out with then manager Ron Atkinson hardly helped his pursuit of regular action. He was sold to City in 1987, but once again fell out of favour and was moved on shortly afterwards.

Sammy McIlroy

Joining Manchester United as a forward from Belfast placed some pressure on McIlroy's shoulders, given the exploits of Northern Ireland's finest, George Best, during the years prior to his arrival. He handled the expectation admirably, though, and would enjoy 11 memorable years with the Red Devils. McIlroy's cause was certainly helped by a debut goal against City at Maine Road when he was just 17 years old. Over the years he would help United to three FA Cup finals, but would taste success in only one. He spent three years at Stoke after leaving Old Trafford, before City came calling in 1985. McIlroy would spend only a year with the Blues, in which he was restricted to just a handful of appearances.

John Gidman

Gidman may not be a household name to many, but he was a full-back of enough quality to earn a solitary England cap in 1977. That honour came during a memorable spell at Aston Villa, with whom he began his career with an eight-year stint. Reliable and hard-working wherever he went, Gidman was Ron Atkinson's first signing as Manchester United manager upon his appointment in 1981. He went on to make over 100 appearances for the Red Devils, including two in FA Cup final victories in 1983 and 1985. Having then been deemed surplus to requirements at United in 1986 he packed his bags and headed off to City. His time at Maine Road, which extended to just two seasons, was largely forgettable as he was unable to prevent the club slipping into the Second Division.

Andrei Kanchelskis

Kanchelskis was a relative unknown when Sir Alex Ferguson brought him to England from Shakhtar Donetsk in 1991. However, it did not take long for the jet-heeled winger to make quite an impression. The four years the Russia international spent at Old Trafford were the most productive of his career, bringing him two Premier League titles. He established a reputation as one of the most dangerous creative talents in the country, and it came as some surprise when he was sold to Everton in 1995. Unable to reproduce the form he displayed while with the Red Devils, Kanchelskis went on to take in spells at Fiorentina and Rangers before rolling back up in Manchester in 2001. He joined City on loan, but was unable to earn a permanent switch as he was unable to recapture former glories back in familiar surroundings.

Peter Schmeichel

The legendary goalkeeper will forever be synonymous with United after establishing himself as one of the greatest shot-stoppers of all time during his days at the Theatre of Dreams. There had been some who questioned his capabilities when brought out of obscurity by United in 1991. Eight years later he left as a Red Devils hero, helping the club climb to the pinnacle of football circles both at home and in Europe. He also tasted European Championship glory with Denmark during his time with the Red Devils. He spent two years with Portuguese outfit Sporting Lisbon after leaving United, but was back in England with Aston Villa in 2001. Schmeichel then made a surprise move to Manchester City a year later, taking in a one-season stint at Maine Road before hanging up his gloves.

Andy Cole

One of the most potent frontmen to ever grace the Premier League, Cole shot to prominence upon reaching the top flight with Newcastle. He was quickly ushered away from St James' Park by Sir Alex Ferguson, who shelled out a record-breaking £7million for his services in 1995. While often maligned throughout his career for being too wasteful, his record at Old Trafford is not to be sniffed at. He made over 200 appearances for the Red Devils, scoring over 100 goals, and tasted domestic and continental glory in abundance while under Ferguson's wing. He would remain among the goals during spells at Blackburn and Fulham, before joining City as a free agent in 2005. A productive start to life at Maine Road was cut short by injury, though, and despite signing a new contract with the club he was offloaded to Portsmouth a year after his return to the North West.

Related Top Tens

Who will follow in Manchester United¿s footsteps by winning this season¿s Community Shield?

Top Ten Community Shield

Thomas Hill takes a look back at 10 memorable moments from Community Shields gone by.

Mario Gomez: Top of the Champions League scoring charts ahead of the resumption

Top ten to watch

Sky Sports picks out ten players to keep an eye on when the UEFA Champions League returns next week.

Papiss Cisse: Made a big-money move to Newcastle during the January transfer window

Top ten January deals

Sky Sports picks out ten of the best January deals after the latest window slammed shut on Tuesday night.

Jordan Rhodes is thought to have attracted several Premier League suitors

Top ten FL targets

Sky Sports looks at ten Football League talents attracting interest from the top-flight this month.

Nemanja Vidic: Has emerged as one of the Premier League's greatest defenders since arriving six years ago

Top ten January deals

Sky Sports picks out some memorable winter transfers of years gone by as the latest window swings open.

Gary Cahill: Expected to attract a lot of interest in the January transfer window

Top ten targets picks out ten players who could be on the move when the transfer window opens in January.

Lionel Messi: Continues to set unfathomably high standards

Top 10 group stars selects the cream of the crop from the group stage of the UEFA Champions League.

Marco van Basten: Wonder goal helped Holland to glory at Euro 1988

Top ten Euro greats picks out ten players who can be considered legends of the European Championship.

Massimo Taibi: Italian goalkeeper makes our unwanted list

Top ten Fergie flops takes a look at Sir Alex Ferguson's worst ten signings as Manchester United manager.

Barnes: Endured a torrid time in charge of Celtic before also being sacked by Tranmere

Manager calamities

In the wake of Steve McClaren's spell at Forest, we pick ten managers that failed spectacularly.