Testimonial May 3rd 1992 v Everton
Eight days after his 17th birthday Norman Whiteside became the youngest player ever to score for United. Weeks later he became the youngest player to appear in the World Cup Finals, and within a year he had played and scored in both a League Cup and F.A. Cup Final.
Whiteside joined United as an associate schoolboy in 1978, having being discovered playing in his native Belfast by Bob Bishop. He began his career as a striker but later converted into a midfield role, where his obvious lack of pace was not a handicap. Powerful, brave and strong his one weakness was ill-discipline which led to cautions and dismissals.
His most effective seasons as a United player were undoubtedly under Ron Atkinson's laissez-faire management style. Whiteside struggled with Ferguson's more disciplined regime, ultimately asking for a transfer although there were no takers at United's £1m. valuation.
A succession of achilles and hamstring injuries limited Whiteside to just six appearances in 1988/89. In August 1989 he joined Everton in a £750,000 deal.
Sadly a knee injury prevented him making a success of his move to Goodison and he was forced to retire in summer 1991, aged just 26. Whiteside is now a fully qualified podiatrist and works for the PFA.