1. UNITED 1 BARCELONA 0 (CHAMPIONS LEAGUE SEMI-FINAL, 2007/08)
United: Van der Sar; Hargreaves, Ferdinand (c), Brown, Evra; Park, Scholes, Carrick; Nani, Ronaldo, Tevez.
You didn’t think we could let the hype around the Barcelona showdown pass without naming this number one, did you?
It wasn’t a game of many goals, but make no mistake about it, Paul Scholes’s brilliant long-ranger ranks among the most important strikes in United history. The way the ball bobbled just before the midfielder let loose was perfect, giving Scholes the platform to smash us into our first Champions League final for nine years, and of course, eventually going on to beat Chelsea in the 2008 final.
A Barcelona team including Lionel Messi, Andres Iniesta and Xavi were not there to back down, though, resulting in a fascinating battle of tension and nerve. United were roared on by the Old Trafford crowd, a vital boost in a tie that flaunted so many potential match-winners across the pitch for both sides.
The same intensity will be needed in Thursday’s meet with Barca, who are flying in La Liga and now face the tremendous M16 atmosphere under the floodlights on a momentous European night. Is there anything better?