- Gary Neville has opened up on the dip he suffered after winning the Treble
- The ex-man united defender spoke on how he had broken up with his ex-fiancée
- Manchester United have snakes in their dressing room, players who are not running. Bruce, Robson, Keane would never allow this – It’s All Kicking Off
Gary Neville has spoken out on the dip he suffered after Manchester United won the Treble in 1999 and has revealed how breaking up with his fiancee at the time ‘threw him completely’.
After rising through the Man United academy, the 48-year-old would go on to make 603 appearances for the club, scoring five goals in the Premier League and two in the Champions League during his time at Old Trafford.
He would enjoy a decorated career with the club, wining two European Cups, while also lifting 12 Premier League titles, notably helping Sir Alex Ferguson’s side clinch a historic Treble in 1999.
But Neville has claimed after the immense high of winning the FA Cup, Premier League and Champions League that season, he suffered a drop-off.
‘When I was 24 and I had that time after the Treble where I dipped, because it was such a high, the Treble was unbelievable,’ he told The Daily Ketchup Podcast.
Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville has opened up on breaking up with his girlfriend after his side won the Treble in 1999
Neville helped guide United to the historic accolade, claiming that things had peaked after winning the Champions League before adding: ‘We knew that it was the best it could ever be’
Neville, here pictured with his brother Phil, added that he broke up with his fiancee at the time and, alongside an injury, that had caused a dip in his performances
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‘It was like a journey of 15 years for Sir Alex [Ferguson] since he had come down from Aberdeen and building this team based upon youth and academy players.
‘And then we go on to win all three trophies in one season. It was absolutely fantastic. I do think that we all realised that night when we won the Treble that it was never going to be as good again in terms of a single season. We knew that it was the best it could ever be.’
When asked whether it was a mental dip or a drop-off in his performances, Neville admitted that two things had happened to him.
The first was that he had sustained an injury and had struggled to regain his form on his return and the second was that he had split up with his fiancee at the time.
‘I’d been seeing someone for about four, five, six years and that relationship broke up at the same time and it threw me completely.
‘Like I was engaged to her and it was my first sort of girlfriend for six years and you think you’re going to be with them forever and all of a sudden it’s over and you think that wasn’t supposed to happen. We were going to get married. For me that was something for the best when I look back.’
When asked what happened, Neville said: ‘She went to go and do a placement of six months in France and Germany and she went to Germany first and that was fine and when she went to France for six months, she met someone over there who she got close to who was on the course and when she came back she ended it.
‘We did have a couple of meetings after that (the Treble) but it was a few months after and it doesn’t quite work or feel the same because the trust is broken. The trust, the feeling is gone. You’ve got me talking about stuff I never talk about!
Neville added: ‘The girl that I’m talking about was a sister of one of my good friends.’
Neville was reportedly in a relationship with former team-mate Ben Thornley’s (pictured) sister, Hannah
Thornley (front row, first from left) and Neville (front row, fourth from left) pictured as part of Man United’s Class of 92 youth team
According to the Belfast Telegraph, she was the sister of former Class of 92 man Ben Thornley, Hannah.
Despite that, Neville would go on to win the Premier League in the following two seasons with United.
United would win the Champions League again in the 2007-08 season, but Neville missed out on the majority of the season with an ankle injury.
He would go on to earn 85 international caps with England, notably helping England reach the semi-finals of Euro 1996 and the quarter finals of Euro 2004, before hanging up his boots in 2011.