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Sunday, 4 June 2017

Manchester United 2-2 All Star XI LIVE: Michael Carrick bags late leveller as his testimonial ends all square

A few eyebrows were raised when Sir Alex Ferguson paid £16million to take Michael Carrick to Old Trafford in 2006.

But for the ex-United supremo, Carrick was "a certainty" to be a success at the club.

The now 35-year-old has been with the Red Devils for 11 years, winning five Premier Leagues, three EFL Cups, the FA Cup, the Champions League and the Europa League.

According to Ferguson, it's not a surprise.

"One of the things that stuck out to me when we were profiling him and preparing to make a bid was that as a young boy, 16 years of age, he left home to play for West Ham," Ferguson said, as quoted by United's official website .

"That tells you that the boy had the confidence that he was going to make it. A 16-year-old kid from Newcastle going to east London, that's a trek, and it impressed me.

"From the minute we bought Michael in 2006, his character has always been outstanding. He's a football man and that character, coupled with his ability, made him a certainty to be a big success at United."

Sunday afternoon sees Carrick honoured, after a remarkable time in Manchester.

Man United XI: Van der Sar; Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra; Fletcher, Scholes, Carrick; Park, Rooney, Giggs

All-Stars XI: Given; Salgado, Carragher, Terry, Abidal; Senna, Seedorf, Mendieta, Duff; Keane, Owen

Michael Carrick - As told by the man who discovered Michael Carrick
Man United '08 2-2 All-Stars: Guest of honour levels with a cracker
FT: Man United 2-2 All Stars
Man United 2-2 All Stars (Carrick)
Man United 1-2 All Stars (Keane)
Back underway
Man United '08 2-2 All-Stars: Guest of honour levels with a cracker

Michael Carrick isn’t even hanging up his boots yet but his testimonial match on Sunday will show how much the Manchester United faithful will miss him.

The midfielder gathered a veritable cast of superstars to Old Trafford, divided into Sir Alex Ferguson’s Man United ‘08 side and an All-Stars line-up led by Harry Redknapp.

Ryan Giggs, Rio Ferdinand, Paul Scholes, Edwin van der Sar and more provided a blast from the past in a good natured kick-about.

John Terry captained the All-Stars, with Clarence Seedorf, Michael Owen and Jamie Carragher among his number.

Gaizka Mendieta scored the first for the All-Stars, cancelled out by Nemanja Vidic’s header from a pin-point Giggs cross.

Robbie Keane then made it a game with a classy finish over Van der Sar’s head.

And commentator Sam Matterface said you couldn’t write it, but really you could. It’s exactly how you’d write it.

The ball sits up for Carrick himself on the edge of the box and his right-footed drive rockets into the back of the net off the post.