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David May (born 24 June 1970) is a retired Englishmarker footballer. He was primarily a centre back, but was sometimes deployed as right back.

Career

Born in Oldhammarker, Greater Manchestermarker, May started his career with Blackburn Roversmarker as a trainee before graduating to the first team. He made over 100 appearances for the club and was part of the Blackburn team which was promoted to the FA Premier League in 1992 and finished as runners-up to Manchester United in the 1993-94 season.

In July 1994, Manchester United bought May for £1.2 million, as he was apparently unhappy at Blackburn in his final months due to the breakdown in contract negotiations. Manchester United manager Alex Ferguson had been searching for a defender to add to the squad, and specifically needed an Englishman who would not be affected by the restrictions on foreign players in European competition that were in place at the time. Injuries to first-choice right back Paul Parker meant that May was often used as a right-back in his first season, and rarely played in his preferred centre back position due to the strong partnership of Steve Bruce and Gary Pallister. As May underperformed, by the end of the season, Gary Neville had emerged to become the new first-choice right back. Manchester United finished the season in second place, coincidentally, behind May's old club Blackburn Rovers.

May finally managed to establish himself in the team towards the end of the 1995-96 season, and scored the first goal in the final game of the season against Middlesbrough. The 3-0 victory clinched the title for Manchester United. He was also in the starting line-up for the 1996 FA Cup Final victory over Liverpool in favour of Steve Bruce (who missed out on a place in the squad for the final).

Bruce departed to Birmingham City soon after, and May became a regular starter in the 1996-97 season making over 40 appearances. His contributions were important as United retained the league title. The team also reached the semi-final of the UEFA Champions League after a memorable 4-0 victory over Porto in the quarter-final, in which May scored the first goal. His form meant that he received a late call-up to the England national football team for a friendly against Mexicomarker, but he never actually won an international cap.

Injuries kept May sidelined for much of the next couple of seasons. The purchases of Henning Berg and Jaap Stam as well as the emergence of Wes Brown limited his chances further and he saw very little action with the first team. However, towards the end of the Treble-winning 1998-99 season, May played some games for the first team as Ferguson rotated his squad to cope with the mounting fixture congestion. He was also named in the starting line-up for the 1999 FA Cup Final as Stam was being rested for the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final against Bayern Munich. May was named on the bench for that match, and became something of a cult hero with the Old Traffordmarker faithful for the way he led the celebrations despite featuring very little throughout the campaign. A popular chant with the crowd was "David May, superstar! Got more medals than Shearer!"

The following season, May was loaned out to Huddersfield Town in order to assist the managerial career of his old team-mate Steve Bruce. In his first game playing for the Terriers, however, he picked up an injury and had to return for treatment to Old Trafford, where he would remain until 2003, but often sidelined by injury and playing mainly in the reserve team. May's last four seasons with United saw him make only 12 appearances in total for the club. Due to his lack of appearances, May collected only two Premier League winner's medals, despite being a squad member for six winning campaigns.

At the end of his contract in 2003, May was finally given a free transfer and snapped up by Burnley manager Stan Ternent, an old friend of Ferguson's, in order to bolster his leaky defence. He captained the Burnley side throughout the 2003-04 season and made a significant contribution to the team. His lack of pace cost him a contract for any longer than 12 months - for instance, in an away game at Coventry City he was easily outpaced by Julian Joachim despite having a significant head start.

After his one-year spell at Burnley, May played at an amateur level with Bacup Borough for one year and finally retired to work in the wine distribution industry, importing South African wines.

He also went on to play golf, but not full time, being one of the rarer left-handed golfers. He later took a job running a company that imported South African wine.

In 2007 he was voted in at number 43 in The Times poll of the "50 Worst footballers (to grace the Premiership)."

May is now working as a pundit on MUTV, Manchester United's in house television station.

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