Who is Man United legend Nemanja Vidic?
Nemanja Vidic, who was born on 21 October 1981, is a Serbian former professional footballer. Vidic played as a centre-back for the Premier League club Man United.
After establishing himself at Crvena Zvezda during the early 2000s, Nemanja moved to Spartak Moscow in the summer of 2004.
Vidic further garnered breakout attention when the defender was part of the “Famous Four” Serbia and Montenegro national team back-line that conceded only one goal during the 2006 Mundial qualification campaign, prompting a £7m transfer to Old Trafford in winter 2006.
Nemanja then established a prominent defensive partnership with Rio Ferdinand the following campaign and was eventually selected as the new club captain of the Red Devils at the start of the 2010–11 campaign.
Vidic’s captaincy ran over the course of four campaigns until his departure in summer 2014. After a period of eight years in Man United, the Serbian defender joined the Serie A club Inter Milan on a free transfer, according to a BBC.
Nemanja mainly featured as a rotational footballer for two campaigns, eventually agreeing to early termination of his deal in winter 2016 as a result of inactivity due to a hernia injury. The Serbian defender then announced his retirement only under two weeks later, on 29 January.
Nemanja Vidic’s international career
A Yugoslavian youth international, Nemanja played his senior debut game in October 2002 with Italy in UEFA Euro 2004 qualification.
Nemanja missed out on Serbia and Montenegro’s opening group stage game with the Netherlands through suspension from his previous red card, and on 12 June 2006, Vidic injured his left knee ligaments during training, and therefore the defender did not participate in any matches in the 2006 Mundial.
After the Mundial, Nemanja went on to represent the national team, now independent as the Serbian national team.
Vidic was a regular during the 2010 Mundial qualifying when fit and was instrumental in Serbia finishing top of their group ahead of the likes of France and Romania, with the best defensive record of all the sides participating in the group.
Serbia had less luck at the 2010 Mundial and came in last place in Group D. In a game with Germany in the Group Stage of the World Cup, Nemanja gave away a penalty in the second half while Serbia was leading 1–0.
However, Lukas Podolski’s kick was successfully blocked by shot-stopper Vladimir Stojkovic. In October 2011, Nemanja missed a decisive penalty with Slovenia.
In October 2011, Nemanja announced his retirement from the national team because of negative comments from supporters about his displays in the national shirt.