Since Sir Alex Ferguson left Manchester United in 2013, the club haven’t got close to a Champions League final, but plenty of their former players have.
In the last 10 years, the furthest United have made it in Europe’s elite competition is to the quarter-finals. Under David Moyes in 2013-14 and under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in 2018-19.
As many as 10 former United players have managed to make it to the final in that time and we have collected them all in this article.
The king of the Champions League. Ronaldo played a crucial role in United’s last Champions League triumph in 2008 and he hit new levels of stardom after leaving the following year – he went on to win a further four times with Real Madrid, starring in their final victories of 2014, 2016, 2017 and 2018.
Now the outright top goalscorer and assister in the history of the competition, the 38-year-old holds all sorts of records. Champions League nights under the lights aren’t the same without him these days.
“Boss, how are you?”
When Sir Alex bumped into Cristiano Ronaldo and Ronaldo Jr. at the Champions League final in 2017 🤗
— B/R Football (@brfootball) August 31, 2021
Had it not been for Barcelona, Evra would’ve been a four-time winner of the competition. Having already lost twice to the Spanish giants while at United, Lionel Messi and co came back to haunt Evra in 2015 while at Juventus.
Marking arguably the greatest front three to ever step foot on a football pitch was never going to be easy, especially when it’s your job to keep Messi quiet.
After originally leaving Manchester in 2012, the French midfielder quickly rose to stardom while in Italy. He alongside Andrea Pirlo, Arturo Vidal and Claudio Marchisio formed one of the most formidable midfield partnerships we have ever seen.
His performance in the 2014-15 Champions League final clearly caught the eye of United fans too. After spending one more season in Italy, he made a record-breaking return to the club in 2016.
There was rarely a dull moment with Tevez on the pitch. His solitary Champions League title came while at United, but he did come close again with Juventus in 2015.
We’ll never tire of watching his highlights reel.
After watching United win the Champions League in 2008 from the sidelines, he then went on to win the competition against his former team-mates the following season.
Pique also started in the 2011 and 2015 Champions League finals with Barcelona. He never quite made it in England, but is undoubtedly a modern-day legend in Barcelona.
The Spanish midfielder still holds a special place in the hearts of many United fans. “To leave, it was difficult because six months before, five months before, I was expecting that offer for me to stay,” Herrera told the club website.
“I got the Player of the Year award by the fans and the club didn’t call me that summer to sign a new contract, and they did with other players. That was painful for me, honestly.”
Despite his reluctance to leave, Herrera did find success with PSG soon after. He was part of the squad in 2019-20 which made it to the final and just lost out to Bayern Munich.
Angel Di Maria
A fellow member of that same PSG squad, United fans probably don’t have as many fond memories when it comes to Di Maria. Things just didn’t work out for him in England despite a promising start.
The Argentine winger started in the 2019 final alongside Kylian Mbappe and Neymar but struggled to get around Bayern’s impenetrable defence.
After a tough season with Chelsea and a sup-par World Cup, it’s great to see Lukaku back on track with Inter Milan. He has averaged a goal contribution every 90.9 minutes which is spectacular.
The Belgian forward has never got his hands on a European trophy. The closest he has been so far was in 2019–20 when Inter made it to the Europa League final, but he will be hoping for a different outcome in this year’s Champions League final.
Lukaku: "I am very grateful to Thierry…" 🙏
Henry: "I texted him every single day to make sure he was OK" 📱
— CBS Sports Golazo ⚽️ (@CBSSportsGolazo) May 16, 2023
United fans probably wouldn’t have believed you if you told them in 2019 that Darmian would make a Champions League final before them, but here we are.
If Manchester City makes it to the final this year, then there’s no doubt that all of the United fans will be roaring on Darmian and co to victory.
While his time at Old Trafford was by no means spectacular, Mkhitaryan produce a handful of magical moments. Now donning the black and blue of Inter, he will have his crack at Champions League glory next month.
His scorpion kick against Sunderland still lives rent-free in our heads. The scenes if he manages to replicate that in the final would be absolutely sensational.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) January 13, 2017