Goal of the Day: Ole nets against Lille

Thursday 31 October 2019 16:45

Our 'Goal of the Day' on Halloween is a typically sharp strike by our manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who scored against Lille on this day in 2001.

Background: With qualification for the Champions League's second group phase in 2001/02 already assured, and a trip to Anfield looming soon afterwards, Sir Alex Ferguson rang the changes for his side’s matchday-six trip to Lille. Among the alterations included a first European start of the season for Solskjaer, who had appeared as a substitute in each of the previous five group games. Guess what happened next…

The goal: It took the Norwegian under six minutes to serve a resounding reminder of his talents. Spotting Solskjaer’s inviting dart in from the right wing to the left channel, David Beckham clipped a superb through-ball behind the home defence. Racing forward, United’s no.20 made space for himself with a neat cushioned touch on the run, then arced a breathtaking first-time shot into the far top corner.

What happened next: Lille’s second-half leveller ensured United finished second in Group G, behind Deportivo La Coruna. Despite not being seeded for the next group stage, the Reds finished top of the pool ahead of Bayern Munich, Boavista and Nantes, before facing Depor again in the last eight and beating them 5-2 on aggregate. Sir Alex's men looked on course for what would have been a fitting final for the manager in Glasgow but ultimately succumbed to a heart-breaking away goals defeat to Bayer Leverkusen in the semi-finals.