A pacy defender with excellent aerial ability and terrific ball control given his towering 6ft 4in frame, Gary Pallister formed half of arguably the greatest central defensive partnership the club has known.
With Steve Bruce by his side ‘Dolly and Daisy’, as they were affectionately dubbed, saw off all comers to United’s 18-yard box in a glorious seven-season stint together.
Their rock-like presence yielded three Premiership titles (1993, 1994, 1996), two runners-up spots, the 1991 European Cup-Winner’s Cup and Super Cup, three FA Cups (1990, 1994, 1996) and the League Cup of 1992.
Born on the Kent coast
in Ramsgate in June 1965, Pallister started his career with non-league Billingham Town and joined the Reds from his boyhood heroes Middlesbrough for £2.3 million in August 1989 – then a record fee for a British defender.
Given a weight-training regime to bulk his skinny body up, the 13th-placed finish of his first season – virtually impossible to conceive of now – was followed by a remarkable run in which United finished outside the top two just once in the next eight campaigns.
An imposing backline, in which Pallister was a permanent fixture (he missed just one league game between 1992 and 1995), proved a cornerstone of