Richard Garcia will swap nib Stadium for Old Trafford after receiving a call-up to play in Manchester United star Michael Carrick’s testimonial match.
The Perth Glory midfielder will line up on June 4 with long-time friend Carrick, as well as Steven Gerrard, Michael Owen and Frank Lampard in an All Stars team.
Their opposition will be the Premier League title-winning 2008 Manchester United side, featuring Edwin van der Sar, Gary Neville, Rio Ferdinand, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs.
TWENTY-YEAR BOND STILL STRONG
Garcia and Carrick played together as teenagers in the famous West Ham United youth side of the mid-1990’s which also included Lampard, Joe Cole and another Australian, former Melbourne Victory and Wellington Phoenix midfielder Michael Ferrante.
They have remained close for the last two decades and were groomsmen at each other’s weddings.
“We were never far apart from each other for a long time,” Garcia told Fox Sports.
“When we left playing together at West Ham, he went to Spurs and [I went] to Colchester around the corner in London so that was easy.
“And then it was the same when he went to Manchester and me to Hull — it’s really close so we remained close.”
GARCIA NEARLY TEMPTED PAL TO PERTH
Garcia came close to convincing Carrick to follow other Premier League stars Robbie Fowler, Liam Miller and William Gallas into Glory colours.
“It was looking really good there for a while,” said Garcia.
“There was a good chance he would have made the move had Louis Van Gaal stayed on at United but once that changed the lure of playing for the one club for so long and ending your career there was too much.”