The Arsenal Invincibles were not ‘great’ according to Gary Neville’s definition

Arsenal Logo

Manchester United legend Gary Neville believes that a ‘great’ side need to win the Champions League.

Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville has given his definition of a ‘great side’.

Write in The Telegraph, the ex-England international explained: ‘The definition of a great side to me is that it has to win the Champions League - and has to win the domestic title two or three times.

'Breaking it down further from there, the hardest thing to do in football can be keeping possession in the last 20 minutes against the best teams when you're 1-0 or 2-0 up’.

Going by Neville’s definition of a ‘great side’, the ‘Invincibles’ Arsenal team are not great because they did not win the Champions League.

The likes of Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp and Patrick Vieira won the Premier League in 2002 and 2004, but could not make much headway in the Champions League.

The Gunners went 49 league matches without suffering a defeat between May 7, 2003 and October 16, 2004. Although Arsenal reached the final of the Champions League in 2006, they failed to win it, losing 2-1 to Barcelona in Paris.

Neville’s definition of a great side may not be that given by others, but it cannot be argued that for any club team to be recognised as truly great, they have to conquer Europe.

Of course, wining the Champions League does not mean that a team is ‘great’ (Porto in 2004 and Liverpool in 2005 were not great sides), but for a team to be termed ‘great’, it needs to win major titles for a number of years.

Register for ARSENAL team updates

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch