The former Ajax, Arsenal and Barça winger picks a classic Dutch 4-3-3, eight countrymen and a player-manager – but there’s English grit, too
EDWIN VAN DER SAR
I was fortunate enough to have played with many great goalkeepers, but Edwin deserves this spot because he managed to play at a world-class level for basically the whole of his career.
He was hard as nails and feared by many a striker. I couldn’t leave him out of my team so I’ve moved him to the right – with Thierry Henry in front of him, we’d need some defensive power there.
Our leader at Ajax when we won the Champions League under Louis van Gaal, he made sure the team’s balance was right and could play in midfield, too, as he proved in that glorious Milan team.
He was strong as a horse, faster than most people thought and very, very difficult to get past. I always preferred having him on my team than having to confront him with Manchester United.
FRANK DE BOER
If you want to collect trophies, you need a true winner in your team. He was good at setting up the passing game from the back, and also managed to score regularly. We still work together at Ajax.
Just like Frank de Boer, he was a winner who’d take the rest of the team in tow whenever necessary. But because of his fighting attitude, people forget he was technically outstanding as well.
I always thought highly of him: he was smart, had a great left foot, made the perfect connection between defence and attack, and never let his team down. His great vision as a player serves him well these days as a coach at PSV.
He was, without any doubt, one of the best I’ve ever played with. At Barcelona he could win games for us on his own. I’d allow him to move freely across the pitch, as that’s when he’s at his best.
What can I say? He’s a living legend. I enjoyed my time with him at Highbury. We had a very strong team in those days, but the Frenchman was the one who stood out as a world-class player.
A true genius, he could destroy any defence with his splendid touch – but he’s also a wonderful, modest guy and a team player who made us all better. He deserved that statue at the Emirates!
I can pick myself in this line-up, right? I wouldn’t miss the chance to play in this dream team if I could! I’d have the time of my life on the left wing of this – very attacking, granted – 4-3-3 formation.