Boro 3 Manchester United 4

Ryan Giggs

Middles­brough 3 Man­chester Uni­ted 4, Eng­lish Pre­mier Lea­gue, River­side Sta­dium, April 10, 2000. Man­chester Uni­ted ended Middlesbrough´s un­defeated run of sev­en Pre­miership ga­mes as they over­came the North York­shire club by 4-3 thanks to one goal each from Ry­an Gig­gs, Andy Cole, Paul Scho­les, and late sec­ond ha­lf sub­sti­tute Quin­ton Fortune. 

In their last FA Carling Pre­miership en­counter, ta­ble top­ping Man­chester Uni­ted had trashed mid-ta­ble West Ham Uni­ted by the over­whelm­ing mar­gin of 7-1 at Old Traf­ford cour­tesy of a hat-trick from Paul Scho­les, in­clud­ing a pen­alty, and one goal apiece by De­nis Ir­win, Andy Cole, Da­vid Beck­ham, and Ole Gun­nar Sol­skjaer, and The Red Dev­ils were fa­vour­ites to be­at Middles­brough des­pite the good re­cent form of the River­side te­am. Boro star­ted well enough, tho­ugh, wi­th Andy Camp­bell put­ting the hosts ahead on eigteeen min­utes as the loc­al born for­ward bril­liantly vol­leyed the ball pa­st Man­chester Uni­ted and Aus­tralia shot stop­per Ma­rk Bos­nich and in­to the onion bag. In­spired by the open­ing goal, Middles­brough con­tin­ued to at­tack and for­mer Three Li­ons stri­ker Bri­an Deane al­most ad­ded a sec­ond for the Teessiders a few mo­ments la­ter, but his head­er was su­perbly saved by Bos­nich. Im­me­di­ately fol­low­ing the re­sump­tion of the con­test, how­ever, Ry­an Gig­gs equal­ised for the vis­it­ing out­fit when the Welsh wing­er fired an ac­cur­ate shot from out­side the pen­alty box bey­ond the reach of ho­me goal­keeper Ma­rk Schwar­zer and in­to the back of the net wi­th just a min­ute gone of the sec­ond ha­lf. And thir­teen min­utes la­ter, Cole han­ded Man­chester Uni­ted the lead for the fir­st time in the tie as he fou­nd the tar­get wi­th a cool fin­ish in­to the bot­tom left cor­ner of the goal be­fore Scho­les stret­ched their ad­vant­age fur­ther when the dy­nam­ic mid­field man power­fully ham­mered the ball ho­me in the 74th minute.

For­mer Man­chester Uni­ted play­er Paul In­ce ev­entually ma­naged to re­duce the de­fi­cit for Middles­brough wi­th a clo­se ran­ge head­er from a cor­ner on 86 min­utes, on­ly for Gig­gs re­place­ment Quin­ton For­tune to add a fourth goal for the vis­it­ors as the So­uth Afric­an in­ter­na­tion­al sco­red from in­side the six-yard area in the 88th min­ute of the Monday fix­ture. Wi­th the mat­ch ap­proach­ing stop­page time, Ju­n­inho Paulista, who had re­placed fel­low mid­field part­ner Rob­bie Mustoe in the 70th min­ute, ul­ti­mately re­gistered the last goal of the even­ing when the twenty-sev­en-year-old play­maker pro­duced an op­por­tun­ist­ic ef­fort from the top left edge of the eight­een-yard area which be­at Ma­rk Bos­nich at the right up­right af­ter 90 min­utes of pul­sating ac­tion to make the fi­nal sco­reline read 4-3 in the fa­vour of The Reds. Af­ter beat­ing Middles­brough, Man­chester Uni­ted were now a mere sev­en points away from win­ning the Pre­mier Lea­gue. Middles­brough Te­am: Ma­rk Schwar­zer, Curtis Flem­ing, Ste­ve Vick­ers, Co­lin Cooper, Paul In­ce, Rob­bie Mustoe, Ma­rk Sum­mer­bell, Chris­ti­an Ziege, Andy Camp­bell, Bri­an Deane, Ham­ilton Ri­card. Sub­stitutes: Rob­bie Stock­dale, Gi­an­luca Festa, Neil Mad­dis­on, Os­valdo Gir­oldo Ju­ni­or, Mar­lon Beres­ford. Man­chester Uni­ted Te­am: Ma­rk Bos­nich, Ga­ry Ne­ville, Hen­ning Berg, Jaap Stam, De­nis Ir­win, Da­vid Beck­ham, Ry­an Gig­gs, Roy Ke­ane, Paul Scho­les, An­drew Cole, Dwight Yorke. Sub­stitutes: Nicky Butt, Teddy Sher­ing­ham, Quin­ton For­tune, Mi­kael Sil­vestre, Rai­mond van der Gouw.

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