Gary Neville reveals the former United player that was brutal with him

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Former Manchester United star Gary Neville has revealed how legendary goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel told him he was not good enough to play for the club.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Neville said: “The one who was hardest with me was definitely Peter Schmeichel, he was brutal with me in that first year or two.

“The one who actually helped me the most in that first year or two was Steve Bruce.

“He played on the right-hand side of the defence, I was right-back when Paul Parker was injured – Parks was a brilliant defender but unfortunately he had an ankle problem, so I got a chance [in the first team] through him having an ankle problem.

“Schmeichel was constant, every day in training at me, every single day in training.

“He actually told me a year or so later when we went out on a team day out, he said he didn’t think I was capable of replacing Paul Parker, he thought I was nowhere near as good a defender as Paul Parker. It’s probably true – Paul Parker was an amazing defender.”

Neville went on to add: “That back four of Parker, Bruce, [Gary] Pallister and [Denis] Irwin had played for two or three years and kept clean sheets.

“I was the first person to break into it and Peter Schmeichel saw me as a risk. And I was a risk, I suppose in some ways.

“They gave me a really hard time. I didn’t see it as tough love at the time, I saw it as being brutal. But it did toughen me up eventually, I realised they obviously wanted the team to win.”