Middlesbrough

Countless Gareth Macklins for every Ryan Giggs

Manchester United fans have celebrated icons like Gary Neville, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs for two decades but spare a thought for the countless number of starry eyed kids who fall by the wayside for a variety of reasons – some through no other fault than their own. Belfast boy Gareth Macklin was one of them as Bob Cass from the MailOnline discovered. A treasured photo illustrates the ultimate schoolboy dream. A beaming 14 year old signs the paper which will open the door to a glittering football career with the world’s most famous club. There to witness the moment are two proud parents and Sir Alex Ferguson. That was 16 years ago.