Manchester United v Barcelona: Head to head
Published 15:26 26/05/09 By By Mirror Sport
Ahead of Manchester United's clash with Barcelona in the Champions League final in Rome, PA Sport recalls some past meetings between the sides:
EUROPEAN CUP WINNERS' CUP (QUARTER-FINAL, MARCH 1984)
Barcelona 2 Manchester United 3 (aggregate score)
In the first leg at the Nou Camp Barca were clearly superior but did not overwhelm United, winning 2-0 courtesy of Graeme Hogg's own goal and Rojo's brilliant strike from distance.
In the return, Bryan Robson's first-half diving header gave the Englishmen the breakthrough they needed. Robson got the all-important second early in the second half and with the momentum clearly with them, United completed a stunning turnaround as Frank Stapleton blasted home the winner.
EUROPEAN CUP WINNERS' CUP (FINAL, MAY 1991)
Manchester United 2 Barcelona 1
After the ban on English clubs competing in Europe, the 1991 final in Rotterdam was United's opportunity to end a 23-year European trophy drought. Johan Cruyff's great Barca side - who were to win their first European Cup at Wembley a year later - were without goalkeeper Andoni Zubizarreta and key midfielder Guillermo Amor through suspension and star striker Hristo Stoitchkov through injury. United seized their chance as Barca reject Mark Hughes struck twice in the second half before Ronald Koeman's goal prompted a tense finish at De Kuip.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE (GROUP STAGE, NOVEMBER 1994)
Barcelona 4 Manchester United 0
United ran into Cruyff's 'Dream Team' at precisely the wrong time. Battered 4-0 by AC Milan in the previous season's final, Barca had a lot to prove. The first group game at Old Trafford ended a 2-2 draw - Hughes and Lee Sharpe scoring for United, Romario and Jose Mari Bakero for Barca. In the return the following month, the forward pairing of Stoitchkov and Romario were superb, ripping apart a United side robbed of goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel due to the limit on foreign players. Stoitchkov (two), Romario and Albert Ferrer all found a way past Gary Walsh and his bewildered backline.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE (GROUP STAGE, SEPTEMBER 1998)
Manchester United 3 Barcelona 3
Another group stage encounter produced one of the most memorable matches between the sides, purely for entertainment value. Paul Scholes and Ryan Giggs scored within three minutes of each other early in the match before Brazilians Sonny Anderson and Giovanni (penalty) brought Barca level before the hour mark. David Beckham typically restored United's lead but Luis Enrique's 71st-minute penalty secured a point.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE (GROUP STAGE, NOVEMBER 1998)
Barcelona 3 Manchester United 3
Miraculously the sides did it all over again two months later. This time Barca led first, through Anderson, but the irresistible combination of Dwight Yorke (two) and Andy Cole saw Barca trail twice with Rivaldo levelling both times, before hitting the bar with a late effort to win it. Sir Alex Ferguson's side finished second in Group D ahead of Barca and famously went on to win the tournament on that same Nou Camp turf, while Barca, finishing third, crashed out of the competition.
CHAMPIONS LEAGUE (SEMI-FINAL, APRIL 2008)
Barcelona 0 Manchester United 1 (aggregate score)
The first leg promised to showcase the talents of two of the most exciting football sides at the Nou Camp but failed to live up to the hype. United squandered a golden opportunity to open the scoring in the third minute when Cristiano Ronaldo missed an early penalty. Barca dominated the remainder of the game but despite long spells of possession were unable to create many genuine goalscoring chances. While Barcelona did not enjoy quite as much possession in the return leg, they still had United chasing shadows at times. Rio Ferdinand and Wes Brown were pillars of strength in defence as Deco, Samuel Eto'o and Lionel Messi all threatened. However, an early 30-yard strike from Scholes proved to be the only goal of the game as United ended a nine-year wait to reach the final.