Manchester United faced off against our bitter rivals Liverpool in the 1995/6 FA Cup final knowing that a win would make us the first club to have ever won the double double.
Having secured our third Premier League title in four years earlier in the week, Man United were riding high but both teams finished the season as the highest scorers in the league so goals were expected.
But before a ball had even been kicked it was advantage to United as far as Sir Alex Ferguson was concerned after Liverpool turned up to Wembley in white suits.
“I said to [assistant] Brian Kidd ‘1-0’. Because of that,” Sir Alex later explained.
“I think that’s, what would you call it? Arrogance or over-confidence. It was ridiculous. Absolutely ridiculous. Blue shirt, red and white tie and white suit. And a blue flower.
“Who designed that? They say it was Armani. I bet his sales went down.
“I mean Jamie Redknapp’s got sunglasses on, but you know the most telling part of it is Roy Evans and Ron Moran had black suits on. I think they were embarrassed.
“Liverpool Football Club’s a great club with history they’ve won the European Cup more times than Manchester United. Between Manchester United and Liverpool, they’ve won more trophies than any other club in Great Britain. That didn’t represent Liverpool.”
As we all know now, that’s exactly how the game finished thanks to Eric Cantona’s brilliant volley in the 85th minute but the majority of the match didn’t exactly live up to expectations.
David James was on hand every time United sniffed out a chance as he kept us at bay and an inspired Roy Keane made it almost impossible for Liverpool to create chance and he was deservedly named man of the match.
Then came the moment of the match from Cantona, who else?
Liverpool had done well to keep the King quiet yet, as he did so many times in a United shirt, he made it count when he got the chance. James punched a corner clear but Cantona was waiting on the edge of the box ready to punish him. Somehow the Frenchman bent his body into shape and caressed home a volley which found its way through a sea of bodies into the back of the net. Bedlam.
Here’s what @OllieSpaniel remembers from the day out: “I remember a big scouse git challenging Man United fans who were chilling and drinking outside Wembley. We took the piss out of him. As for the game, Eric sorted it which led me to swinging on the No.7 car park lamp post in celebration. We went back to our hotel near Marble Arch and had a big night out in Covent Garden. There weren’t any colours allowed in the pubs so we were singing on the balcony of Punch & Judy. What a night.”
Next up in our FA Cup final series in 1998/9 during our fabled treble year!