Ahead of this weekend’s Manchester derby, Last Word On Football takes a look at six great players who have represented both the red and blue halves of the city.
Six Great Players Who Played for Both Manchester Clubs
Andrew Cole joined Manchester United in 1995 for a then British record fee of £7 million. Cole had a hugely successful United career, securing five Premier League titles, two FA Cups and the Champions League. Scoring a total of 121 goals for United, Cole was an integeral part of United’s success in the late 1990’s, and developed a great partnership with Dwight Yorke. Their connection on the pitch was a key part of United’s Treble success in 1998/99.
Cole left Manchester United in 2001 after the arrival of Ruud van Nistelrooy from PSV. Cole joined Blackburn Rovers for £8.75 million. After three seasons at Blackburn, Cole joined Fulham for the 2004/05 season before joining Manchester City the following year on a free transfer.
Cole had a good season with Manchester City scoring 10 goals in 23 games for Stuart Pearce’s side. However it was his only season at the Eastlands club and moved to Portsmouth on deadline day in 2006 for an undisclosed fee.
A product of Manchester United’s youth system, Brian Kidd played for the red half of Manchester from 1967-1974, the highlight of which was scoring in United’s 4-1 win over Benfica in the 1968 European Cup Final. Scoring 70 goals in 266 appearances, Kidd transferred to Arsenal in 1974 following United’s relegation from the First Division
Following two years in North London Kidd returned to Manchester to play for City. Spending three years at Maine Road, Kidd scored 44 goals in 98 league appearances for Manchester City before moving to Everton in 1979.
Kidd has also coached both Manchester clubs serving as assistant to Sir Alex Ferguson between 1991-1998 and holding the same position at Manchester City since 2009. Kidd has been involved with title wins for both clubs as a coach with United winning 4 Premier League titles during his time as coach and City winning 2 titles since he has been a coach.
Denis Law signed for Manchester City in 1960 for a British record £55,000 from Huddersfield Town beating Manchester United to his signature. Law scored 25 goals in 50 appearances before joining Italian side Torino in 1961.
Law returned to English football after only one year in Italy, Sir Matt Busby finally getting his man. Law spent 11 years becoming one third of the famous Law, Best, Charlton trinity which led Manchester United to become the first English side to win the European Cup in 1968. Law scored 237 goals in his time at United and was the second highest goal scorer in the club’s history when in left.
Law returned to City in 1973 playing one final season before retiring in the summer of 1974. He scored 12 goals in 1973/74 including a back heel against his former club in the Manchester Derby, which consigned United to relegation.
Billy Meredith signed for Manchester City in 1894, scoring his first goal against Newton Heath LYR, the club that would go onto become Manchester United. Meredith helped City win promotion to the First Division, Second Division champions, and to their first major trophy win, the 1904 FA Cup. Meredith left City in controversial circumstances as he joined Manchester United while serving a suspension for his part in a match fixing scandal.
While at United Meredith helped the Old Trafford club to their first First Division title in 1907/08, adding a further title in 1910/11 and the 1909 FA Cup to his trophy haul. Meredith played a total of 303 games for United before returning to Manchester City in 1921.
Meredith played a further 26 times for City before retiring at the age of 49. Meredith still holds the record for oldest player at both Manchester United (46 years, 281 days) and Manchester City (49 years, 245 days)
Peter Schmeichel signed for Manchester United in 1991 in a deal from Brøndby. He went on to become one of United’s greatest goalkeepers and helped the club to a period of dominance of English football winning five Premier League titles, three FA Cups, one League Cup and a UEFA Champions League trophy. “The Great Dane’s” importance to United was highlighted after his departure to Sporting Lisbon in 1999 as a string of goalkeepers failed to fill Schmeichel’s gloves.
After two seasons in Portugal, Schmeichel returned to English football signing for Aston Villa. After only one season in Birmingham, Schmiechel moved to Manchester City.
Schmeichel only played for Manchester City for one season. He helped Kevin Keegan’s side to ninth in the Premier League and maintaining his undefeated record in Manchester Derbys, winning at the Maine Road. He was injured for the return game at Old Trafford, which ended in a draw. Schmeichel retired at the end of the season.
Carlos Tevez joined Manchester United from West Ham in 2007, in a deal which saw his third party owners Media Sports Investment move the player to the reigning Premier League champions, on a two year loan deal from MSI.
Tevez made an instant impact at Old Trafford scoring 19 goals in his first season as Manchester United won both the Premier League and Champions League. Tevez found more competition for places in his second season due to the arrival of Dimitar Berbatov from Tottenham Hotspur for £30.75 million. Tevez still managed to score 15 goals as United retained the Premier League and added the League Cup and FIFA World Club Cup to their trophy cabinet.
In the summer of 2009 Tevez moved across Manchester as City paid MSI for Tevez registration ending his third party ownership. Welcomed as a hero from day one with the infamous Welcome to Manchester billboard, he became a talisman for them scoring 29 goals in his first season. More goals and trophies followed as he helped City win the 2011 FA Cup and the 2011-12 Premier League. Tevez left City in 2013 joining Italian side Juventus for a reported £12 million.
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