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Memorable games between Manchester United vs Spanish sides

Manchester United has had some unforgettable encounters with teams from the Iberian Peninsula in the past. Check out here the most memorable games between Manchester United vs Spanish sides.

Last updated: 29.04.2021
Memorable games between Manchester United vs Spanish sides | Sports Social Blog

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Manchester United faced Granada in the quarter finals of the Europa League and the Red Devils came out victorious in the ties with an aggregate score of 40. United has had some unforgettable encounters with teams from the Iberian Peninsula in the past, and we've chosen some of the most memorable ones.

Deportivo La Coruna 3-2 Manchester United – Champions’ League group, 2001/02

Man United and Deportivo La Coruna met multiple times in a year in the early 1990s, with the Spanish side making decent progress against the English side. The relatively small side from Spain won 2-1 at home in their first meeting, before repeating the achievement in a five-goal epic at Old Trafford. With two victories over the Red Devils, they advanced to the next round.


Manchester United 3-2 Deportivo La Coruna – Champions League quarter-final, 2001/02

The two sides met once more in the Champions League quarter-finals, however this time the stakes were much higher, and Deportivo couldn't replicate the feat. United won 2-0 in the first leg at the Riazor before facing the Herculinos in a five-goal drama, with a brace from Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and a goal from Ryan Giggs advancing them to the last four. David Beckham notoriously fractured his metatarsal bone in his foot during this match, jeopardising his chances of playing in the 2002 World Cup.

Manchester United 4-3 Real Madrid – Champions League quarter-final, 2002/03

After 16 years, three things stand out about this game: Ronaldo's efficiency, David Beckham's substitute performance, and John O'Shea's nutmegging of Luis Figo. On the right wing, the Waterford man caught the ball and looked to be already marshalled by the Portuguese legend, but O'Shea moved the ball from one foot towards the other before breaking through Figo's legs with the ball. Absolute legend.

Ronaldo scored against United in the 12th minute itself eventually leading on to score a hat-trick while Wes Brown and John O’ Shea were trying to keep tabs on him. Van Nistelrooy, then at United got 1 back for the Reds. An own goal by Ivan Helguera got them an inch closer. With United trailing 3-2, Beckham came off the bench to net a double and offer United their very first win over Real, but they were eliminated on aggregate 5-6. They would still have lost on the away goals rule even if they had scored again before the end of the game. The England winger's benching presaged his gradual departure from his boyhood club, where he would join the triumphant opponents the following summer.

In contrast to this game, United and Spanish teams would provide little excitement for years to follow, with five goalless draws over the next six games against Iberian rivals. Paul Scholes would score the game's only goal in the 2008 semi-final victory over Barça but their next encounter with the Catalans would be a disaster.


Barcelona 2-0 Manchester United– Champions League Final, 2008/09

Lionel Messi jumped into to the air to reach Xavi's cross, a player that had never scored against an English team in his career and was not renowned for his heading ability. United's remaining hopes of keeping the title were destroyed as the ball snuggled at the far corner of the net, as the Argentinian netted Barça's second goal of the night. Sheer display of class.

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