Match rewind: What’s your favourite comeback win?
At Manchester United, we love a comeback victory.
As part of our Match Rewind series – where we stream classic matches in full, and for free, on ManUtd.com and via MUTV's on-demand service – we’re reflecting on some of our most famous fightbacks.
We’ve got four nominees for fans to choose between and the winner will be shown at 19:00 BST on Tuesday.
The phrase ‘football’s a game of two halves’ has never been more apt than on this September afternoon in 2001. United were left humiliated after the opening 45 minutes, in which goals from Dean Richards, Les Ferdinand and Christian Ziege left us trailing 3-0 at the break. After the game, Sir Alex Ferguson refused to be drawn on what he’d said during half-time, but whatever it was clearly worked, as the Reds went into overdrive in the second period. It took just 45 seconds for the visitors to score, via an Andy Cole header from a Gary Neville cross. Laurent Blanc added a second soon after, and with just under 20 minutes remaining Ruud van Nistelrooy nodded in an equaliser. Juan Sebastian Veron then confirmed the most incredible of comebacks when he rifled home from the edge of the area, and David Beckham’s late piledriver proved to be the cherry on top of the sweetest of cakes.
United were chasing down a first title in four years when we travelled to Goodison Park in April 2007. Going into the weekend, the Reds led Chelsea at the league’s summit by three points and defeat would have presented Avram Grant’s men with the opportunity to draw level on points. After 50 minutes, that looked to be a real possibility, with David Moyes’s Toffees 2-0 up. It took an Ian Turner error for United to get back into the game, as the Everton goalkeeper spilled the ball into John O’Shea’s grateful path and the Irishman prodded the ball home. Phil Neville then inadvertently turned the ball into his own goal, before former Toffee Wayne Rooney’s cool finish put United ahead. Chris Eagles rounded things off when he added a late fourth, as United marched further towards the title. Chelsea’s stumble against Bolton Wanderers ultimately allowed the Reds to stretch our lead to five points, and the Blues’ failure to beat Arsenal the following weekend ensured Sir Alex’s men earned a ninth Premier League crown.
Another late-season comeback helped United’s stride towards the title. West Ham had led 2-0 at the break, thanks to a brace of Mark Noble penalties, but Rooney’s virtuoso performance ensured we extended our lead at the top of the table to seven points. Our former skipper curled in an exquisite free-kick in the 65th minute and then pulled us back on level terms with a bullet strike soon after. Fabio’s run down the right flank earned the Reds a penalty, after the ball flicked off Matthew Upson’s arm, and our former skipper converted from the spot and completed his hat-trick. With six minutes remaining, future Hammer Javier Hernandez finished things off when he dispatched Ryan Giggs’ excellent cross into the back of the net.
The foot was on the other shoe in 2018 when we travelled across Manchester to take on our local rivals. Pep Guardiola was closing in on his first league triumph in England and three points in the derby would have made it mathematically impossible for City to be caught in top spot. At half-time, with City 2-0 ahead, our neighbours looked set for a night on the town, but the Reds had other ideas. Paul Pogba netted twice in three minutes to level the scoreline, before Chris Smalling converted our third. He met Alexis Sanchez’s inch-perfect cross by volleying home past Ederson, much to the delight of the away following at the Etihad. United were the ultimate party-poopers and City’s derby-day nightmare meant they had to wait another week to be confirmed as champions.
HOW TO VOTE
Select which classic encounter you’d like to see by voting in our Match Rewind live blog.
Be quick, though – the poll closes at 16:00 BST on Tuesday, a few hours before we live stream your selection on ManUtd.com, and via MUTV's on-demand service, at 19:00 BST.
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