Goal of the day: Scholesy's super slalom

Saturday 16 November 2019 02:00

Date: 31 March 2007, Old Trafford, Premier League 

Background: The table-topping Reds were locked in a title tussle with Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea and the sides were separated by six points after the final international break of the campaign. With tricky away trips to Goodison Park, the Etihad Stadium and Stamford Bridge on the horizon, United were targeting a win to maintain the gap at the summit when we entertained Mark Hughes’s Rovers at Old Trafford, in front of a then-record Premier League crowd of 76,098 people.

The goal: Matt Derbyshire’s 29th-minute tap-in had stunned the Theatre of Dreams and, with the clock ticking, the Reds needed a response. Up stepped Scholes. Picking up possession just outside the Blackburn area, the midfielder scurried past Chris Samba, before dropping his shoulder to evade the despairing slide-tackles of Ryan Nelsen and Stephen Warnock and then slamming the ball into the back of the net. All square again, game on.

What happened next: Buoyed by the equaliser, the resurgent Reds turned the game on its head, with further strikes from Michael Carrick, Ji-sung Park and substitute Ole Gunnar Solskjaer earning a 4-1 win. On the same day, Chelsea’s Salomon Kalou scored a late winner at Watford to keep the Blues in touch but, despite a defeat at Portsmouth the following week, Sir Alex Ferguson’s wrapped up the title with two games to spare.

Reaction: "If you get good players like Paul Scholes in decent areas, you know he's likely to produce an end product,” said Hughes. “In those situations, he has a very cool head and great technical ability and awareness. Once he got past the last man, I expected him to hit the net and he did. But it's no surprise.”