Better than Kaka and equal to Ibrahimovic – the four Manchester United players among world’s best

While the potential of Rasmus Hojlund will only be truly assessed in a few years&apos time, the likes of Alejandro Garnacho and Kobbie Mainoo look real talents. Back in 2001, United had a handful of promising players on their books who looked to have a big future ahead of them.

In fact, four of them made FourFourTwos list of the top 100 youngsters who they believed would go on to dominate world football, one of them being ranked higher than future United stars Zlatan Ibrahimovic in 35th and Dimitar Berbatov in 82nd. Kaka, then of Sao Paulo and arguably the player to ultimately have the best careers of those on the list, was ranked a lowly 95th.

Four places ahead was Kieran Richardson. The winger ultimately became a left-back when he left United for Sunderland in 2007 via a loan spell at West Brom in the 2004/05 season.

He tallied 81 senior appearances for United, in which scored 11 goals. Moves to Fulham, Aston Villa and Cardiff ensued before he hung his boots up in 2016 after 264 Premier League appearances, two titles and an FA Cup.

Four places above him was the little-known Ramon Calliste. The Welsh striker made the rarely trodden path of switching from United to Liverpool in 2006.

Failing to make a senior appearance he moved to Scunthorpe United before heading to Cambridge City and then West London Saracens at step 11 of the pyramid. Unsuccessful trials at Shrewsbury, Lincoln and Wycombe followed in later years, bringing an end a career that included Wales Under-21 caps.

At number 69 was Bojan Djordjic who was at United between 1999 and 2005, making sporadic appearances amid a spate of loan spells. After leaving for Rangers, he joined Blackpool before playing in Sweden and India. He finished his career in the Asian country in 2015, 17 years after his senior debut.

Most recently, he hit headlines when he had an on-screen clash with current Sweden boss Janne Andersson during Marchs internationals.

And One United hero on the 22-year-old list is still at the club today. Darren Fletcher came 13th and the midfielder lifted five Premier League titles, a Champions League, a Club World Cup and an FA Cup during his time in the senior set up at Old Trafford.

He made 342 appearances in his 14-year career, scoring 24 times and providing 30 assists – although it is his link-up play that got most admiration. Fletcher is now a technical director at the club.