Rashford, Yorke and Pique – The Man Utd legends Diallo follows in the No.19 shirt

Paul Macdonald
Paul Macdonald Updated: 20 May 2021 11:26 BST 5 min read
Rashford, Yorke and Pique – The Man Utd legends Diallo follows in the No.19 shirt

Manchester United have handed new signing Amad Diallo the number 19 shirt after the teenager finally completed his £37 million move from Atalanta on Thursday.

The Ivorian winger is expected to compete with the likes of Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood for a starting berth in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side and will join up with his new team-mates in the coming days.

Diallo isn’t the first significant star to wear the No.19 at Old Trafford, with a rather illustrious list of current and former players – as well as those who didn’t quite make the grade – to have donned the shirt before him.

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  • Nicky Butt

    Current head of first team development Nicky Butt was the first to pull on the jersey after graduating as part of the Class of 92 alongside the likes of David Beckham, Ryan Giggs and Paul Scholes.

    The combative midfielder made almost 80 appearances in the number, winning three Premier League titles, before making the switch to the No.8 shirt that most fans remember him for.

    Ronny Johnsen

    Norwegian centre-back Ronny Johnsen struggled with injuries throughout his time in Manchester, but the defender enjoyed one of his best seasons in the No.19 of United.

    After Butt relinquished the number, Johnsen inherited it and made 31 top-flight appearances on his way to his first Premier League crown. It was the most outings the Scandinavian ever managed in England and Johnsen may regret not holding onto the number for longer than a single campaign.

    Dwight Yorke

    Arguably the most significant former owner of the shirt is Dwight Yorke. Upon his arrival in the summer of 1998, the forward was handed the No.19, and he immediately set about forming an incredible partnership with Andy Cole in attack.

    Eighteen Premier League goals in his maiden season at Old Trafford fired United to another domestic title, which formed part of Sir Alex Ferguson’s side’s famous treble.

    The good run of stars donning the shirt ended after Yorke’s departure.

    Rashford, Yorke and Pique – The Man Utd legends Diallo follows in the No.19 shirt

    Rashford, Yorke and Pique – The Man Utd legends Diallo follows in the No.19 shirt

    Ricardo

    Spanish goalkeeper Ricardo was the next recipient, but the shot-stopper only featured five times throughout the 2002/03 season as Fabien Barthez kept him out of the starting XI.

    He moved back to his homeland the following summer via Racing Santander, with the club narrowly avoiding relegation after dropping Ricardo to the bench for their last four league games. Quite the drop off then.

    But it got worse.

    Eric Djemba-Djemba

    Eric Djemba-Djemba was the next incumbent after the midfielder was brought in as Roy Keane’s heir. The Cameroonian’s move never worked out, and he ended up making just 39 appearances for the Red Devils before moving to Aston Villa 18 months later.

    Edwin van der Sar

    The arrival of Edwin van der Sar ahead of the 2005/06 campaign saw the good times return to the No.19 shirt, albeit relatively briefly. The former Ajax keeper arrived from Fulham for a fee of just £3.5m, and it proved to be one of Ferguson’s most notable signings.

    After struggling to replace Peter Schmeichel for several seasons, the signing of Van der Sar was pivotal in United returning to the top of the Premier League and winning their third European crown. The Dutchman only wore the 19 shirt for one season before changing to the more conventional No.1, but the number will remain a part of the goalkeeper’s legacy.

    Gerard Pique

    Gerard Pique took over the jersey for the 2007/08 season, making 13 appearances in all competitions as the Spain international played his part in United’s Premier League triumph.

    The Barcelona academy graduate never settled in England and couldn’t break up the partnership of Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic at the heart of the Old Trafford defence so returned to his boyhood club at the end of the campaign. Eight La Liga crowns, four Champions Leagues and six Copa Del Reys suggest he made the right decision.

    Rashford, Yorke and Pique – The Man Utd legends Diallo follows in the No.19 shirt

    Rashford, Yorke and Pique – The Man Utd legends Diallo follows in the No.19 shirt

    Danny Welbeck

    Danny Welbeck wore the No.19 for the longest period of time, with the now Brighton striker donning the shirt for six seasons during his time in Manchester. The English man managed 29 goals and 21 assists before Louis van Gaal deemed the local lad surplus to requirements.

    Injuries have seriously hampered his career, but two Premier League titles, two FA Cups, 42 England caps and almost 250 Premier League appearances is something to shout about.

    James Wilson

    When James Wilson burst onto the scene, many pundits, fans and players alike thought the youngster was going to be the next big thing to come out of the famous Manchester United academy. Unfortunately for the now Salford City striker, his career more resembled that of Federico Macheda’s.

    Moves to Brighton, Derby, Sheffield United and Aberdeen followed without much success before the ex-Manchester United owners at Salford took a chance on him. Wilson has rewarded their faith with six goals in 14 appearances so far this season as the Ammies fight for promotion from League Two.

    Marcus Rashford

    United’s current No.10 was the last player to wear the No.19 shirt. Marcus Rashford held the number from 2016/17 to 2017/18, scoring 24 goals in 105 appearances. If Diallo can follow a similar career path to his predecessor, then United will be a top Premier League and European force once again.

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