The PFA Player of the Year award is voted by players and is awarded to the player who has been judged to be the best player in the country for that season.
The award has been handed since 1973 and has been awarded to some of the best players that have graced the old First Division and the new founded Premier League.
Manchester United have dominated the English league for many years and a number of players have brought the prestigious trophy back to Old Trafford. Here is a look back at every Manchester United player to win the PFA Player of the Year.
- (1988-89) -
- (1990-91) -
The now Stoke manager Mark Hughes had an illustrious playing as well as one in management with spells at Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Chelsea but arguably his best years of his playing career came while he was at Old Trafford.
After leaving in 1986 for a spell at the Nou Camp, he returned back in 1988 for what was then a record £1.8m by new manager Alex Ferguson. He shone his first season back at a club even if the earlier season form saw them stuttering down in 11th, but a resurgence mainly headed by the Welshman saw them climb up to third.
A late stutter saw them finally finish in mid-table, but 16 goals in 51 appearances were enough to earn Hughes the honour of being the first United player to win the award.
Two seasons later he won his second PFA trophy starting off the 1990-91 season on a high when he scored both goals against former club Barcelona to win the European Super Cup. He also shone throughout the campaign with 21 goals and was joint top scorer in the league with 13 goals with teammate Steve Bruce.
- (1991-92) -
The second United player to win the PFA trophy was defender Gary Pallister, after five years at boyhood club Middlesbrough he broke the national record transfer fee for a defender to move to the nest.
After two successful seasons he shone in the final season of the old First Division setting up a solid partnership with Bruce which proved dividends on the pitch, winning the League Cup and finishing second in the league. Pallister finished the season performing excellently in practically all of his 52 games earning him the trophy.
- (1993-94) -
One of the best players that ever graced the English game and certainly one of the superstars in the early stages in the Premier League was Eric Cantona.
He made an influential difference when he joined from arch rivals Leeds United in 1992 winning the debut Premier League trophy.
He somehow managed to improve on that the season after when his 25 goals were an major contribution to United retaining their league title as well as a brace to hand them a FA Cup final victory over Chelsea at a rainy Wembley earning the honour of being the third United player to be handed the PFA trophy.
- (1999-00) -
After a five-year absence without a PFA player Irish midfielder, Roy Keane started a three-year dominance of the awards in the 1999-00 season.
After been made the captain of the side the Irishman led by example as United retained the Premier League after their historic treble season. Keane managed to be solid in the centre of midfield and as well as that brought an attacking style to his game with 12 goals which is an impressive total for a midfielder. Keane was well deserving of the trophy.
- (2000-01) -
For the second year in the row, it was a United player who won the PFA trophy with this time being striker Teddy Sheringham.
Sheringham was already a firm fan favourite after his legendary equaliser against Bayern Munich in the Nou Camp two seasons previously. Despite being 35 and not having a major role in the squad, the previous season he shone has he played a major role in United retaining their title for the third consecutive year.
Sheringham managed one of the strongest campaigns in his long career managing to end his final season at Old Trafford as top scorer with 21 goals in his 42 appearances.
Ruud van Nistelrooy
- (2001-02) -
Dutch striker Ruud van Nistelrooy ended the trio of PFA awards with a simply astonishing first season in England.
After his move was held off for a year due to injury before finally completing his record £19m move a year later, the pressure may have been slightly on the forward with the price tag but he certainly didn’t let that dent his confidence.
United may not have won any trophies, the first season without a trophy since the 1997-98 season but it was one full of personal honours. Ruud was the Champions League top scorer and an excellent total of 36 in 49 appearances earned him the top personal honour in the English game.
- (2006-07) -
- (2007-08) -
Portuguese forward Cristiano Ronaldo was seen as hate figure around the country after his involvement in Wayne Rooney’s dismissal at the World Cup in the summer but rose above the negativity to help United reclaim their title after a three-year absence.
An impressive haul of 23 goals in 53 games saw him collect amass a collection of personal honours which included both the PFA Player and Young Player of the Season awards, the first double win since Andy Gray in 1977.
He also collected the PFA Fans' Player of the Year and Football Writers Association Award the first player to collect all four of those major awards.
He somehow topped that the next season with his best ever campaign in a United, the winger was simply unstoppable in the 2007/08 season with an incredible 42 goals in 49 games which saw him the PFA gong once again along with another Premier League medal and added a Champions League medal to his collection.
- (2008-09) -
After such an illustrious career filled with both domestic and personal honours it seemed a given that club legend Ryan Giggs had already won the PFA trophy but it wasn't true. However, that was eventually crossed off his relatively short list of things not won by Giggs, in the 2008-09 season.
The Welshman didn’t really make much of a contribution in another season which brought another Premier League trophy, only making 12 starts at the time of receiving the trophy but there is no doubt that he deserved the trophy on merit alone for not only his contribution to United but to the English game as a whole.
- (2009-10) -
The last player to win the award was none other than the current striker and captain Wayne Rooney. The former Everton man had been consistent throughout his first five seasons since his £30million move but the 2009-10 one is arguably the one where he showed his true potential.
United hadn’t been as dominant as in other years only winning the League Cup but his individual performances were out of this world scoring 34 goals in just 44 matches. An injury in a Champions League tie with Bayern Munich pretty much ending his season but he had already done enough to win countless praise and accolades.