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Gary Neville reveals the 'terrible' reason why he 'never' spoke to his friends again after leaving school

Josh Lawless

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Gary Neville reveals the 'terrible' reason why he 'never' spoke to his friends again after leaving school

Gary Neville has recalled how he stopped contact with friends from school in order to focus on becoming a footballer.

Neville, along with younger siblings Phil and Tracey, attended Elton High School in Bury.

When he left, he immediately joined Manchester United as an apprentice and was the captain for the iconic Class of 92 FA Youth Cup-winning side.

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Neville went on to wear the armband for his beloved United in the first-team, making 602 appearances and winning eight Premier League titles.

Neville also represented England 85 times and appeared at European Championship and World Cup tournaments.

However, in order to get to the very top, Neville felt as though he had to make sacrifices.

And that included not speaking to his pals from school and refraining from going out.

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Image: Getty
Image: Getty

Although he describes his action was "terrible", brother Phil followed the same path.

Speaking on the Stick to Football podcast, brought to you by Sky Bet, Neville said: "When I left school at 16, I never spoke to my friends from school ever again. I look back at it now and it was terrible.

"I just thought that if I don’t put everything into football, then I’d regret it.

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"I knew my school friends would be going out and having a good time, but I had to get out of this. My leaving do at school was at a pub surrounded by people drinking and doing all sorts and I had to get away.

“It was one of those things that I needed 100% focus – I never went out or anything for four years and Phil [Neville] was the same.”

Image: Getty
Image: Getty

Neville's dedication paid dividends and he is widely regarded as one of the best defenders ever to play in the Premier League.

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He is the perfect example of hard work and professionalism. In the latest podcast, Neville revealed that he was only ever late once in his entire career and was "devastated" given the standards he held himself to.

He explained: “I remember being late once when I was coming into Carrington, once in 20 years. I got stuck in horrendous traffic; I was never late. I was ringing up, I was frantic, I was absolutely devastated.

"Just the standards that I set, just if anyone else was late I’d criticise people, because that is the most disrespectful thing you can do, making your teammates wait.

"Working hard goes without saying, but if everyone is waiting for you, you can’t be that person in life.”

Featured Image Credit: The Overlap & Getty

Topics: Gary Neville, Manchester United, England

Josh Lawless
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