My West Ham youngsters were as good as Manchester United's Class of '92, says Harry Redknapp

Frank Lampard West Ham

Harry Redknapp has claimed that the set of youngsters he worked with at West Ham was as good as Manchester United's Class of '92 and could have gone on to win the Premier League.

Redknapp managed the Hammers between 1994 and 2001, and helped bring through the likes of Frank Lampard, Rio Ferdinand, Joe Cole, Jermain Defoe, Glen Johnson and Michael Carrick at Upton Park.

And the former Tottenham and Portsmouth boss believes that group was equal in quality to the academy graduates who became first-teamers at United in the mid-1990s – a crop which included Paul Scholes, David Beckham, Ryan Giggs, Gary Neville, Phil Neville and Nicky Butt.

“People always talk about Manchester United producing the Class of ’92 but they weren’t any better than the six boys we produced at West Ham,” Redknapp told The Athletic.

“If you put those two groups of six against each other, there would be nothing in it.

“Ferdinand went on to win championships, Frank Lampard won everything, Cole won everything and Michael Carrick won everything. Then you have Glen Johnson who won Premier League titles, and Jermain Defoe who had a terrific career.

"If the kids had stayed at West Ham, what a team that would have been. That would’ve been six England internationals in one team. That was the difference. Manchester United kept their youngsters and that’s what enabled them to become a great team.

“If I kept those six players together I’m certain I would have won the Premier League.”


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Greg Lea

Greg Lea is a freelance football journalist who's filled in wherever FourFourTwo needs him since 2014. He became a Crystal Palace fan after watching a 1-0 loss to Port Vale in 1998, and once got on the scoresheet in a primary school game against Wilfried Zaha's Whitehorse Manor (an own goal in an 8-0 defeat).