Which classic London away win should we stream?
With any luck, live Manchester United matches are soon to return. But until then, our 'Match Rewind' series is here to stave off all pangs of football hunger.
Three a times a week during lockdown, we've been inviting fans to vote on which classic games they want to see in full, for free, via the homepage of ManUtd.com and our Official App.
This time, our theme is outstanding United away performances in London. Obviously, there are numerous famous cup finals and semi-finals that we've contested in the capital, but here we're just looking at performances produced against London sides on their own patch.
It's quite a list, so read on to find out about the games on offer and be sure to cast your vote via the Match Rewind blog...
WIMBLEDON 0 UNITED 3 (1996/97)
The opening day of the 1996/97 league season was one to remember, especially for young David Beckham. This was arguably the day that the Leytonstone lad became a superstar and a household name in the United Kingdom – if not the world. United, then reigning English champions, were coasting to a 2-0 win at Selhurst Park, thanks to goals from Eric Cantona and Denis Irwin, when a staggering moment arrived with just three minutes still to play.
Becks takes the applause at Selhurst Park after one of the most remarkable goals in United history.
Spotting the Dons' goalkeeper, Neil Sullivan, off his line from inside his own half, Beckham swished his right foot through the ball, like a golfer hitting a casual iron shot from the middle of the fairway, and found the back of the net, halfway up, with laughable ease. “That is absolutely phenomenal,” yelped commentator John Motson, and he wasn't wrong. Life would never be the same again for the boy wonder after this piece of Hollywood-esque magic. Other players have scored from their own half since – and from further out – but none have done it so beautifully.
ARSENAL 2 UNITED 4 (2004/05)
A night at Highbury that is remembered for what happened before a ball had even been kicked, as much as the six-goal thriller that followed. Roy Keane famously told opposition skipper Patrick Vieira that he’d “see him out there” after the pair locked horns in the tunnel ahead of the game. And when things finally got under way, Vieira must have soon regretted his decision to anger Keane and co.
Admittedly, it was the Frenchman who headed Arsenal into the lead after eight minutes, before Ryan Giggs levelled proceedings. And in a fiery encounter, it was the hosts who led at the break, courtesy of Denis Bergkamp’s strike on 36 minutes. Yet, in the second period, United ran riot. First a Cristiano Ronaldo brace reversed Arsenal’s lead and then, after Mikael Silvestre had seen red, John O’Shea provided the most delightful – and surprising – of endings by chipping home a late fourth for United.
SPURS 0 UNITED 4 (2006/07)
A crucial match on the run-in to a first title in four seasons, Cristiano Ronaldo set us on our way in this one with a nerveless first-half penalty, after being fouled by Steed Malbranque. In the second half, Nemanja Vidic, Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs stretched our lead and, with it, our advantage over Jose Mourinho's Chelsea at the top of the table. The really memorable moment of the afternoon arrived, however, as the game looked to be idling towards a muted finish. With Edwin van der Sar unable to continue due to a broken nose, and United's subs all used up, John O’Shea stepped in for a brief cameo in goal. Impressively, Mr Versatile successfully repelled the home side for the remainder of the match, as the away fans humorously chanted, ‘Ireland’s Number One’.
Is there any position Sheasy couldn't play?!
WEST HAM 2 UNITED 4 (2010/11)
A late-season comeback that helped United stride towards a record-breaking 19th title, West Ham had led 2-0 at the break in this one, thanks to a brace of Mark Noble penalties. But Wayne Rooney’s virtuoso performance in the second period ensured we extended our lead at the top of the table to seven points. Our leading marksman curled in an exquisite free-kick in the 65th minute, and then pulled us level with a bullet strike soon after. When Fabio’s run down the right flank earned the Reds a penalty – his cross having flicked off Matthew Upson’s arm – the marauding Merseysider then converted from the spot to complete a memorable, and important, hat-trick. With six minutes remaining, future Hammer Javier Hernandez finished things off by dispatching Ryan Giggs's cross into the back of the net.
HOW TO VOTE
You can select which of the four matches you want to see by voting in our Match Rewind live blog.
The vote closes at 11:00 BST on Thursday (4 June) and we’ll show the winning game in full, and for free, on the Official App and ManUtd.com at 19:00 BST later that evening.
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