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Biography

One of the modern Manchester United greats, Denis Irwin’s career was one of steady progression to the biggest stage for club and country – where he proved a natural, if often underrated performer, offering sterling service at left-back, with a keen eye for goal.

The former Leeds United trainee was a £625,000 capture from Oldham Athletlc in 1990, having impressed during that year’s epic FA Cup semi-final tussle against the Reds. His first season with United, 1990/91, presaged by a World Cup quarter-final with Jack Charlton’s unfancied Repubic of Ireland, culminated in European Cup Winners' Cup glory in Rotterdam. But it was the 1992/93 Championship-winning season in which Irwin really established himself. Ever-present, he weighed in with five goals, chief among them a 30-yard belter against Coventry City. He was the solitary ever-present during the Double-winning campaign of 1993/94, and was a cornerstone of the side that repeated the feat in 1996. Forced to miss the FA Cup leg of 1999’s Treble through suspension, he was back for the Nou Camp Champions League showdown with Bayern Munich, making a mockery of his 34 years. Further title deeds followed in 2000 – Denis calling time on his international career to prolong his domestic future. A 500th appearance for the Reds arrived during his 10th year of service in 2001 – fittingly enough on St Patrick’s Day, when he skippered the side to home victory over Leicester City. He was given the armband again for the final home game against Derby County – and hoisted the trophy – his seventh title. Having extended his one-year deal by another 12 months, he eventually brought the curtain down on a glittering 12 years against Charlton Athletic at Old Trafford in May 2002. He remains United’s second most-decorated player, with 13 winner’s medals.

Read Less About Denis Irwin
  • Position

    Defender

  • Country

    Republic of Ireland

  • Date of birth

  • Joined

  • United debut

    v Liverpool (N) Charity Shield

  • Left United

Latest

Denis Irwin.

Irwin predicts a tight game against Leicester video

“It is up to us to grab the bull by the horns,” says Denis Irwin ahead of United facing an in-form Foxes side…

Aaron Wan-Bissaka during Manchester United's Premier League game with Southampton.

Irwin: I'm a big fan of Wan-Bissaka Article

The Irishman, who knows a thing or two about full-backs, explains why he's been hugely impressed by our summer signing.

Denis Irwin.

Irwin: My verdict on the new signings video

Have you voted for the August Player of the Month yet? Here’s Denis Irwin with his take on the nominees...

Denis Irwin interview at Shanghai training session.

Irwin's insight video

Treble hero Denis Irwin explains why today's Shanghai training session is a crucial one...

Denis Irwin.

"I got so much stick at Elland Road" video

Ahead of our tour clash with Leeds, Denis Irwin recalls the reception he used to get from fans of the Yorkshire club...

Bryan Robson and Denis Irwin in Perth as part of Manchester United's Tour 2019.

Legends relishing renewed Leeds rivalry Article

Denis Irwin and Bryan Robson reflect on their battles with the Yorkshire outfit ahead of Wednesday's game.

Denis Irwin in the MUTV studio at Old Trafford

Chance for Chong and co video

Ex-United defender Denis Irwin feels some young Reds could be blooded in the Europa League next season...

Treble Icons: Denis Irwin Article

One of the most dependable players in 1998/99 - and United history! - is ready to face Bayern Munich again on 26 May.

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Conor McGregor: Why I'm a Red Article

'The Notorious' praises Keano, Sir Alex, Ole and many more club legends in a must-read interview.

Denis Irwin.

Irwin assesses our options against PSG video

Who do you expect to start on Wednesday night? Denis Irwin, our 1999 Champions League winner, offers his opinion...

Peter Schmeichel.

Schmeichel and defenders back for Treble Reunion Article

Peter Schmeichel will return to Old Trafford on 26 May, behind a host of big-name defenders from our 1998/99 season.

Draxler, Neymar Junior and Angel Di Maria celebrate a Champions League goal against Napoli

'This tie promises two great European nights' Article

United legend Denis Irwin and Paris Saint-Germain have given their reaction to our Champions League last-16 draw.

Eric Cantona scores against Liverpool in his comeback game.

Revealed: Our greatest penalty taker Article

We've had many spot-kick experts in the Premier League era - but which of them was the most reliable?

Denis Irwin takes a penalty for United XI in the Liam Miller Tribute Match

Miller honoured in tribute match Article

Denis Irwin, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and Roy Keane were among the legends who played in Tuesday's game for Liam Miller.

Irwin: My time at Wolves was special video

Denis Irwin grew up a Wolves fan & loved playing there after United - except for when he had to mark a young Ronaldo...

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