'Barcelona were brilliant,' said Neville, who retired earlier this season but was still involved as a guest in the United party who travelled to London for the final.
'Their second goal was a knockout blow and flattened us, but they were simply the better team. With a group of players as good as Barcelona have, it's just fantastic to watch at times.'
Brilliant: United legends Gary Neville and Roy Keane had nothing but praise for Barcelona
As one of United's 'golden homegrown generation' along with his brother Phil, David Beckham, Paul Scholes and Nicky Butt Nevilleknows a thing or two about local talent and how it can bond a club. He praised Barca for being such a club.
'Seven of those Barcelona players tonight came through the ranks of their club and that helps to make them an unstoppable force,' he said.'You have to hand it to them, they're brilliant. And Messi was absolutely magnificent one of the best players that we've ever seen.'
Neville said that for the past two decades football has been about greater physical fitness and athleticism. 'And now Barcelona aretaking it back to the days of the great Brazil teams, total football,' he added.
Keane said Barcelona are 'the best team I've ever seen. They're on a different level and that might make it a touch easier [for United to take]. United didn't disgrace themselves tonight. They just came up against the best team ever.'
Neville spoke before the match about United's desire to 'put right what happened two years ago', a reference to the 2-0 final defeat to Barcelona in Rome.
Unstoppable: The pundits were full of praise for Barcelona
Keane suggested before kick-off that Wayne Rooney had not shown the best of his abilities 'on the biggest occasions' but, after the striker's first-half goal, he praised a 'fantastic' opening period and United's positive start.
Neville conceded he had been 'concerned' for United at times during the first 45 minutes. He added: 'Barcelona were in full flow and the opening goal illustrated the problem.[United's] back four were dismantled and Pedro got through. And once they get behind you, you're going to have a real problem trying to stop them.'
On Rooney's equaliser, he said: 'That was so important to get United back into the game but it's always difficult when you've got Barcelona players running off you.'
Graeme Souness won the European Cup three times with Liverpool but, after watching Barcelona demolish Manchester United, he declared: 'They are the best team who've ever played the game.
Souness's three triumphs were in 1978, 1981 and 1984 when Liverpool dominated Europe. But he insisted Barca have taken the game to a new level.
'This is such a special team,' said the Scot. 'I know Messi gets the headlines and, rightly so, because he is the best player in the world.
'But look across that team and see what Xavi and Iniesta contribute and it wouldn't be the same without them. How do you stop them that's the question. And it's one that no one has answered to far. They are simplyunstoppable.'
Souness was speaking as a pundit on Sky, alongside Jamie Redknapp, who described Messi as 'the best player the world' and the Barcelona team as 'brilliant'.
'It's almost as if they think it's a crime to give the ball away,' Redknapp said.
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Explore more:People: Paul Scholes, Graeme Souness, David Beckham, Roy Keane, Wayne Rooney, Xavi, Nicky Butt, Gary Neville, Jamie Redknapp Places: Barcelona, Rome, Liverpool, London, Brazil, Europe