Opinion: 70 seconds that summed up a super-charged night

Thursday 20 October 2022 12:09

Manchester United’s dominant performance on Wednesday evening garnered a plethora of highlight moments across the 90 minutes.

While the decisive strikes on the night – delivered by Fred and Bruno Fernandes – will no doubt be the most replayed and recollected today and in the future, there was another passage of play that really summed up a super-charged night at the Theatre of Dreams. 

Just over 35 minutes into the contest, with United pressing for the breakthrough, came 70 seconds of full-blooded action that epitomised the Reds’ relentlessness and fight, which was brilliantly met by growing roars from the Old Trafford crowd at every whole-hearted intervention. 

From Lisandro Martinez’s tackle on Heung-min Son, to Jadon Sancho slipping in Fred, to a determined challenge by Luke Shaw, to Fernandes relieving the pressure by playing the ball out to Diogo Dalot and so on, the noise level continued to go through the gears. 

It would then reach fever pitch when Antony produced a sublime piece of skill to roll away from two pursuing defenders, and there is no doubt that the roof of our M16 home would have come off shortly after, had Fred’s long-range attempt picked out the top corner as intended. 
'Listen to Old Trafford roar!' Video

'Listen to Old Trafford roar!'

Proper blood-and-thunder football has the home crowd on its feet...

That passage was just over a minute of an enthralling evening of Premier League football at Old Trafford, but it’s one that leaves me with a sense of breathlessness when replaying it back afterwards. 

You can see – and hear - it all in the clip above, alongside a brilliant piece of commentary from our own Liam Bradford, who perfectly describes the intensity inside the stadium at the time. 
That, of course, didn’t spark out of nothing and was building up from the stands - from both sets of supporters in fairness - even before the first whistle. 

Our home backing were then, again, appreciative of a battling, energetic showing from the Reds and it resonated across the stadium, similar to during the victory over Liverpool earlier in the season. 

While that night would always be a tough act to follow from a satisfaction point of view, the win over Tottenham produced what many believe, myself included, to be the best performance of the Erik ten Hag era so far. 
90 in 20: United v Tottenham Video

90 in 20: United v Tottenham

90 in 20 | Watch the extended highlights from our electrifying Premier League home match against Spurs...

Even from the press box, it was clear to see the joy and jubilation on our players’ faces as they prepared to head off the pitch, particularly just three days on from an afternoon in which they clearly felt that they had left two points untaken out on that same pitch against Newcastle United. 

I don’t know about you, but it always gives me a really warm feeling inside when seeing the passionate celebrations that the lads have been enjoying with the supporters on their way off the pitch this season.

Seeing Martinez pump his fists to a serenade of ‘Argentina! Argentina!’, for example, will never get old and the defender has since spoken of his emotion at hearing those chants again last night. 

Martinez moved by the fans' affection


Lisandro Martinez admits the "amazing atmosphere" made him feel like crying.

That connection gives me a sense of pride to call United my football club, as did that colossal 70 seconds in the first half, the evening’s atmosphere and another brilliant three points. 

On to Chelsea!

The opinions in this story are personal to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United Football Club.