Manchester Utd 1 Spurs 4
Manchester United 1 Tottenham Hotspur 4, Old Trafford, English Football League First Division, October 28, 1972. Manchester United, who found themselves sitting in 21st position in the First Division table, succumbed to a heavy defeat at the hands of Spurs at home. United were three goals down at the break, and ultimately lost the game by four goals to one.
Manchester United had started the 1972-73 campaign on the wrong foot with defeats to Ipswich Town, Liverpool, and Everton respectively. Following draws against Leicester City, Arsenal, Chelsea, and West Ham United, Frank O´Farrell´s United lost to Coventry City and Wolverhampton Wanderers before they gained their first win of the season by beating reigning champions Derby County 3-0 at Old Trafford where Welsh international Wyn Davies, a recent £60,000 signing from neighbouring rivals Manchester City, opened the scoring before Willie Morgan and Ian Storey-Moore added a goal each. This was followed by a disappointing 1-0 defeat against Sheffield United at Bramall Lane, then a 2-2 draw to West Bromwich Albion at The Hawthorns. Manchester United hit back with a 1-0 victory over Division One new boys Birmingham City at Old Trafford, with the lone goal coming from Ted MacDougall, who had just been bought from AFC Bournemouth for a transfer fee of £200,000, but then came a 2-1 defeat against Newcastle United at St James´ Park.
Despite the new signings at Manchester United, the team did not seem to be improving under O´Farrell, and his worries continued to grow with an embarrassing 4-1 defeat against Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford on the 28th of October 1972. After handing Tottenham the lead in the 20th minute of the encounter, Three Lions international Martin Peters went on to score two more goals in the 24th and 34th minutes respectively to give The White Hart Laners a comfortable 3-0 lead at the interval. Former England player Bobby Charlton reduced the deficit for Manchester United three minutes before the hour mark, only for Peters to make the final score 4-1 in favour of the North Londoners in the 80th minute of the clash when the suave midfield playmaker beat home goalkeeper Alex Stepney with a well placed header. If anything, this match was a lesson in clinical finishing. Manchester United Team: Alex Stepney, Willie Watson, Tony Dunne, David Sadler, Martin Buchan, Willie Morgan, Denis Law, Ted MacDougall, Ronald Davies, George Best, Bobby Charlton. Substitutes: None. Tottenham Hotspur Team: Pat Jennings, Ray Evans, Cyril Knowles, John Pratt, Mike England, Mike Dillon, Jimmy Pearce, Steve Perryman, Martin Chivers, Martin Peters, Ralph Coates. Substitutes: None.
Manchester United Quickfacts
Manchester United beat Spurs 3-2 in the first game between the two clubs at Old Trafford on the 15th of March 1911. Billy Meredith, Enoch West, and Sandy Turnbull scored the goals for United.