The number ‘7’ jersey is more than just a shirt. In the world of soccer, there are only a few jersey numbers that represent more than just a number on the players back. Certain numbers carry the weight of a legacy by a player who has worn it in the past, and the number ‘7’ is one of the most iconic of them all.
At Manchester United specifically, so many iconic names have worn the Man United jersey, but some have become legends thanks to the number seven. It’s a number associated with skill, prestige, and match-winning brilliance. Although it may be iconic of a player to home this number, with the greatness comes immense pressure. From David Beckham’s crosses to Cristiano Ronaldo’s free kicks, this shirt has witnessed some unforgettable moments.
With all this being said, we want to take a look at some of the legends from Manchester United who have brought significance to wearing the number ‘7’ jersey!
The legend of the number ‘7’ jersey at Manchester United began with George Best. One of the original “Holy Trinity” with Sir Bobby Charlton and Denis Law, Best was known for his skill and flair on the pitch. Remembered for his charisma and his impressive 137 goals in 361 appearances, his 11 years with Manchester United have gone down in history as some of the best.
The reputation of players wearing the number ‘7’ and holding that responsibility built up from Best’s days. He was a crucial part of Manchester United’s success in the 1960’s, and he embodies everything that it means to wear the number ‘7’ for Man United.
Referred to as the best captain that Sir Alex Ferguson had ever had during his time with Manchester United, it made sense that Bryan Robson was given the number ‘7’ jersey. Robson – known to many as ‘Captain Marvel’ – had what it took to wear the number ‘7’ and give it justice.
Robson’s leadership and brains were instrumental during Man United’s time under Sir Alex, and he understood what it meant to wear the specific jersey. The number ‘7’ may have been a lucky number for him at first, but he later enjoyed the responsibility of wearing that jersey for 13 years.
Eric Cantona inherited the number ‘7’ from Bryan Robson after his leave from Manchester United. Cantona had big shoes to fill taking over the number from ‘Captain Marvel’, which he fortunately did with ease. His arrival from Leeds United in ’92 marked the beginning of Man United's dominance of the Premier League.
He made a profound impact on the club, and is evidently one of the club’s best players - regardless of the jersey. Combining technical skills with elegance, Cantona guided the Red Devils to four Premier League titles, two FA Cup’s, and three Community Shield’s. Based on the impact that he had on Man United’s history, there’s a reason why people call him King Eric.
There’s no one in the football world quite like David Beckham. Beckham had always been destined for greatness, so it only made sense that the baton of the number ‘7’ jersey was passed down to the iconic Englishman. From a young age, Man United knew that Beckham had what it took to embody a number ‘7’ player.
He was an integral member of the class of ’92, and he possessed a right foot with magical abilities. Beckham made his way into the history books with his precise crosses and free kick abilities. Even though he became even more famous due to his celebrity status, he has clearly left his mark on the number ‘7’.
When the Portuguese teenager came along to Manchester United, Sir Alex gave him the number ‘7’ jersey. Ronaldo knew about the power that the jersey held, and was ready to perform at the highest level for the club. At the time, no one knew that he was going to become arguably the greatest player to wear the number ‘7’ jersey.
Ronaldo’s talent and presence had fans across the world cheering him on, and to this day many regard his time at Manchester United as some of his best. He won three consecutive Premier League titles, an FA Cup, the Champions League, and his first Ballon d’Or as a United player. Man United fans witnessed the evolution of a player who would go on to become one of the greatest of all time – thanks to his origins at Manchester United.
Since Ronaldo, there has yet to be a player who has resembled the likes of the number ‘7’ jersey. Great players like Antonio Valencia, Memphis Depay, and Angel Di Maria were given the number ‘7’, but no one has lived up to its expectations.
Today, the number has been given to Manchester United’s newest signing, Mason Mount. The Englishman wore the number ‘19’ for Chelsea but has donned the number ‘7’ for England and throughout his youth. As the club takes big steps forward under Erik ten Hag, fans are ambitious that the club now has what it takes to bring home some major silverware once again.
At Manchester United the number ‘7’ aligns with high expectations and the origins of a legendary player. However, have you ever wondered what other jersey numbers might resemble within the sport? If you’re interested in finding out, check out our blog: The Significance of Soccer Jersey Numbers.
- Tags: LIFESTYLE