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Messi, Suarez or Ronaldo, Rooney? Pique names his Barcelona-Man United combined XI

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Photo by Alex Caparros/Getty Images

Gerard Pique defined an era in Barcelona’s defence, forming an integral part of Pep Guardiola’s champion team and the years that followed.

The Barça legend hung up his boots just over a year ago after his importance and performance steeply dropped for Barcelona. However, he left the club as a champion on all fronts, with the UEFA Champions League and the FIFA World Cup against his name.

Pique will be remembered as one of Barcelona’s greatest defenders ever. Despite having left the club early on in his career, he impressed and earned a return to Catalonia and is thus an inspiration to several young and budding players.

After all, playing for Manchester United gave him experience and the chance to rub shoulders with some of the finest players in history.

Speaking to the media in a recent interview, the former Barcelona defender was asked to pick between the two generational teams he had been part of which even faced off at one point in a Champions League final.

Going position by position, he explained his picks in what makes up for a fascinating lineup. Here are Pique’s preferences revealed by the department.

Goalkeeper

Forced to pick between two all-time greats, Edwin van der Sar and Victor Valdes, the defender went for the former Manchester United star. While he did emphasise that it was a tough call, his preference meant that the lineup started with a Premier League presence.

Defence: Pique excludes himself

Between Gary Neville and Carles Puyol at centre-back, Pique picked his long-term teammate, leader and guide Puyol to lead the defence, saying that the iconic former Barça captain was like a brother to him.

He was then asked to pick between United legend Rio Ferdinand and himself to partner Puyol in defence. Faced with the tough question, he opted for the selfless route, choosing Ferdinand in his lineup.

‘Nemanja Vidic or Javier Mascherano’ was the next question the Spanish legend faced a tough question at right-back. He picked the United star once again, stating that it was purely because the Argentine was a defensive midfielder by trade.

The final place in defence was poised as a difficult choice between Jordi Alba and Patrice Evra. Pique opted for the Barcelona superstar as he was part of the super-team that broke special records in Catalonia.

Midfield: Draw between Xavi and Scholes

Two of the best ever. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Moving to midfield, his choices began favouring the Catalan side more. The first decision he had to make was between Michael Carrick and Andres Iniesta, and Pique did not hesitate before picking the Barcelona magician, calling him a ‘top, top one’.

The former defender also added that Iniesta was the player who scored the goal that made him a world champion.

The most difficult question the Barcelona legend faced, however, was between Paul Scholes and Xavi Hernandez. He admitted that he could not choose one over the other, opting for a stalemate.

Attack: Messi over Ronaldo, Suarez benched

The big question was the first one to arrive in attack – Cristiano Ronaldo or Lionel Messi. As he has said several times before, the Argentine ace was the obvious choice for Pique.

Between United’s Nani and Barcelona’s Pedro, Pique chose his former Barcelona teammate stating that he was the most undervalued player they had in Catalonia at the time.

The defender’s final dilemma was a doozy – Wayne Rooney or Luis Suarez. He picked the United legend on that front, justifying that the player was a monster in his prime, which happened to be when Pique was in United.

Source: talkSPORT

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