Sir Fergie’s Champions League semi finals – in chronological order!
Babs and Fergs
It’s over, innit? Man Utd 2-0 up from the first leg, never lost a European home game by more than a single goal, never not progressed after winning the first leg away from home… Done and dusted.
That’s completely excellent for United fans but rather annoying for everyone else who was hoping for some excitement in at least one of the semi finals.
The Spoiler realised how boring it all was this morning when considering what to write about it. So, we’ve gone the easy route and done a list of all Sir Alex Ferguson’s previous European semi finals – WITH (some) VIDEOS!!!!!!!!!!!
Borussia Dortmund, 1997, lost 2-0 on aggregate
This was the first time a young, vibrant Sir Alex Ferguson had reached this stage of the competition and he was pretty unlucky not to make it through. They absolutely d*cked Dortmund in the first leg with Eric Cantona pulling the strings, but lost 1-0 thanks to a René Tretschok goal. Lars Ricken netted at Old Trafford in the second leg. Cantona retired in the summer. That was that.
Juventus, 1999, won 4-3 on aggregate
When The Spoiler was growing up, Juventus were the Daddies of European football – Davids! Del Piero! Inzaghi! ZIDANE! After drawing the first leg at Old Trafford 1-1, the tie looked over after Inzaghi scored twice in 11 minutes at the Stadio delle Alpi. However, Roy Keane went and put in one of the bestest performances we’ve ever seen to drag United through. He scored before Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole scored their zillionth goal of the season each. Excellent stuff.
Bayer Leverkusen, 2002, lost 3-3 on aggregate (away goals)
The Spoiler had forgotten about this. This was during that weird period when United were far too good for everyone else in the Premier League but were rather bloody disappointing in Europe. They drew 2-2 at Old Trafford and 1-1 in Germany. The highlights are all rubbish, so we’ve gone for Zidane’s goal in the final that year. You don’t mind, do you?
AC Milan, 2007, lost 5-3 on aggregate
The first match looks like it was a bloody brilliant game based on the highlights above. Was it? Again, The Spoiler’s memory is failing us. Anyway, the second leg was memorable for just how much better AC Milan were than United – they dominated at the San Siro and showed United what they needed to do…
Barcelona, 2008, won 1-0 on aggregate
Cristiano Ronaldo missed a well early penalty at the Nou Camp in the first leg which finished goalless. The second leg saw Paul Scholes do a Paul Scholes and send United into the final against Chelsea.
Arsenal, 2009, won 4-1 on aggregate
This was notable for a couple of reasons – a couple of excellent Ronaldo goals* in the second leg and the sending off of Darren Fletcher for a good tackle on Cesc Fabregas. He missed the Champions League final against Barcelona and in his absence everyone decided he was actually the best player ever and totally underrated.
* of which EVERY YouTube clip seems to have the dreaded ‘disabled by request’ thing going on. Swines.