United 98/99

The 1998–99 season was the most successful season in the history of Manchester United Football Club. After finishing the previous season without winning any titles, United won a treble of trophies (the Premier League, FA Cup and UEFA Champions League), the first side in English football to achieve such a feat. During the campaign United lost only five times, including a one-off Charity Shield fixture, in the League Cup against eventual winners Tottenham Hotspur and their only home defeat, a league match against Middlesbrough in December 1998. A run of 33 games unbeaten in all competitions began on 26 December at home to Nottingham Forest.
Veteran players Brian McClair and Gary Pallister, along with a host of younger and less experienced players such as goalkeeper Kevin Pilkington and striker Graeme Tomlinson, had left the club before the season began. The big news of the pre-season was the arrival of Dutch defender Jaap Stam for a club record fee of £10.75 million. Other additions included striker Dwight Yorke and Swedish winger Jesper Blomqvist. Goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel announced his intention to leave the club after eight years at Old Trafford, joining Sporting Clube de Portugal at the end of the season.
The team’s never-say-die attitude, instilled in previous seasons, was key to their success as the players often thrived in difficult situations. The highlight was United’s dramatic comeback in the Champions League final, when Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjær each scored in injury time to overturn Bayern Munich’s first-half lead. David Beckham was runner up to Rivaldo for 1999’s European Footballer of the Year and FIFA World Player of the Year awards.
Fans and writers regard the treble haul as manager Alex Ferguson’s finest hour, although he dismissed that assertion in later years. Tens of thousands of fans lined the streets of Manchester to welcome the team as the season drew to a close. In recognition of his achievements Ferguson was awarded a knighthood,and handed the Freedom of the City of Glasgow in November 1999.
By the end of the season Manchester United had become the world’s richest football club, and the most valuable sporting brand worldwide. The club was also at the centre of a takeover bid by BSkyB, which was blocked by the Monopolies and Mergers Commission in March 1999.


DateOpponentsH / AResult
25 July 1998Birmingham CityA3–4Mulryne (3, 1 pen.) 21′, 38′, 56′20,708
27 July 1998Vålerenga IFA2–2Scholes 12′, Solskjær 14′19,700
31 July 1998BrøndbyA6–0Sheringham (2) 33′, 71′, Scholes 44′, Cole (2) 66′, 84′, Cruyff 90′27,022
4 August 1998BrannA4–0Irwin (3) 43′, 44′ (pen.), 55′ (pen.), Cole 82′16,100
18 August 1998Eric Cantona European XIH8–4P. Neville, Butt, Scholes, Giggs, Cantona, Cruyff, Notman (2)55,121
18 January 1999AberdeenA1–1
Johnsen 51′21,500


FA Charity Shield

DateOpponentsH / AResult
9 August 1998ArsenalN0–367,342

FA Premier League


DateOpponentsH / AResult
15 August 1998Leicester CityH2–2Sheringham 79′, Beckham 90′55,0527th
22 August 1998West Ham UnitedA0–026,03911th
9 September 1998Charlton AthleticH4–1Solskjær (2) 39′, 63′, Yorke 45′, 48′55,1479th
12 September 1998Coventry CityH2–0Yorke 20′, Johnsen 48′55,1935th
20 September 1998ArsenalA0–338,14210th
24 September 1998LiverpoolH2–0Irwin 19′ (pen.), Scholes 80′55,1815th
3 October 1998SouthamptonA3–0Yorke 12′, Cole 60′, Cruyff 75′15,2512nd
17 October 1998WimbledonH5–1Cole (2) 19′, 88′, Giggs 45′, Beckham 47′, Yorke 52′55,2652nd
24 October 1998Derby CountyA1–1Cruyff 86′30,8672nd
31 October 1998EvertonA4–1Yorke 14′, Short 23′ (o.g.), Cole 59′, Blomqvist 64′40,0792nd
8 November 1998Newcastle UnitedH0–055,1743rd
14 November 1998Blackburn RoversH3–2Scholes (2) 31′, 59′, Yorke 43′55,1982nd
21 November 1998Sheffield WednesdayA1–3Cole 29′39,4752nd
29 November 1998Leeds UnitedH3–2Solskjær 45′, Keane 46′, Butt 78′55,1722nd
5 December 1998Aston VillaA1–1Scholes 47′39,2412nd
12 December 1998Tottenham HotspurA2–2Solskjær (2) 11′, 18′36,0791st
16 December 1998ChelseaH1–1Cole 45′55,1592nd
19 December 1998MiddlesbroughH2–3Butt 62′, Scholes 70′55,1523rd
26 December 1998Nottingham ForestH3–0Johnsen (2) 28′, 60′, Giggs 62′55,2164th
29 December 1998ChelseaA0–034,7414th
10 January 1999West Ham UnitedH4–1Yorke 10′, Cole (2) 40′, 68′, Solskjær 81′55,1803rd
16 January 1999Leicester CityA6–2Yorke (3) 10′, 64′, 86′, Cole (2) 50′, 62′, Stam 90′22,0913rd
31 January 1999Charlton AthleticA1–0Yorke 89′20,0431st
3 February 1999Derby CountyH1–0Yorke 65′55,1741st
6 February 1999Nottingham ForestA8–1Yorke (2) 2′, 67′, Cole (2) 7′, 50′, Solskjær (4) 80′, 88′, 90′, 90′30,0251st
17 February 1999ArsenalH1–1Cole 61′55,1711st
20 February 1999Coventry CityA1–0Giggs 79′22,5961st
27 February 1999SouthamptonH2–1Keane 80′, Yorke 84′55,3161st
13 March 1999Newcastle UnitedA2–1Cole 25′, 51′36,7761st
21 March 1999EvertonH3–1Solskjær 55′, G. Neville 64′, Beckham 67′55,1821st
3 April 1999WimbledonA1–1Beckham 44′26,1211st
17 April 1999Sheffield WednesdayH3–0Solskjær 34′, Sheringham 45′, Scholes 62′55,2701st
25 April 1999Leeds UnitedA1–1Cole 55′40,2552nd
1 May 1999Aston VillaH2–1Watson 20′ (o.g.), Beckham 47′55,1892nd
5 May 1999LiverpoolA2–2Yorke 22′, Irwin 57′ (pen.)44,7022nd
9 May 1999MiddlesbroughA1–0Yorke 45′34,6651st
12 May 1999Blackburn RoversA0–030,4361st
16 May 1999Tottenham HotspurH2–1Beckham 43′, Cole 48′55,1891st

Colours: Green = Manchester United win; Yellow = draw; Red = opponents win.

1Manchester United38221338037+4379

Points allocation: Three points awarded for a win; one for a drawn match; none for a loss.

FA Cup

DateRoundOpponentsH / AResult
3 January 1999Round 3MiddlesbroughH3–1Cole 68′, Irwin 82′ (pen.), Giggs 90′52,232
24 January 1999Round 4LiverpoolH2–1Yorke 88′, Solskjær 90′54,591
14 February 1999Round 5FulhamH1–0Cole 26′54,798
7 March 1999Round 6ChelseaH0–054,587
10 March 1999Round 6 replayChelseaA2–0Yorke (2) 4′, 59′33,075
11 April 1999Semi-finalArsenalN0–0 (a.e.t.)39,217
14 April 1999Semi-final replayArsenalN2–1 (a.e.t.)Beckham 17′, Giggs 109′30,223
22 May 1999FinalNewcastle UnitedN2–0Sheringham 11′, Scholes 52′79,101

Colours: Green = Manchester United win; Yellow = draw; Red = opponents win.

League Cup

DateRoundOpponentsH / AResult
28 October 1998Round 3BuryH2–0
Solskjær 106′, Nevland 115′52,495
11 November 1998Round 4Nottingham ForestH2–1Solskjær (2) 57′, 60′37,337
2 December 1998Round 5Tottenham HotspurA1–3Sheringham 70′35,702

Colours: Green = Manchester United win; Yellow = draw; Red = opponents win.

UEFA Champions League

Second qualifying round

DateRoundOpponentsH / AResult
12 August 1998Second qualifying round
First leg
ŁKS ŁódźH2–0Giggs 16′, Cole 81′50,906
26 August 1998Second qualifying round
Second leg
ŁKS ŁódźA0–08,000

Group stage

DateOpponentsH / AResult
16 September 1998BarcelonaH3–3Giggs 17′, Scholes 25′, Beckham 64′53,6013rd
30 September 1998Bayern MunichA2–2Yorke 30′, Scholes 49′53,0003rd
21 October 1998BrøndbyA6–2Giggs (2) 2′, 21′, Cole 28′, Keane 55′, Yorke 60′, Solskjær 62′40,3151st
4 November 1998BrøndbyH5–0Beckham 7′, Cole 13′, P. Neville 16′, Yorke 28′, Scholes 62′53,2501st
25 November 1998BarcelonaA3–3Yorke (2) 25′, 68′, Cole 53′67,6482nd
9 December 1998Bayern MunichH1–1Keane 43′54,4342nd

Colours: Green = Manchester United win; Yellow = draw; Red = opponents win.

Bayern Munich632196+311
Manchester United62402011+910

Points allocation: Three points awarded for a win; one for a drawn match; none for a loss.

Knockout phase


DateRoundOpponentsH / AResult
3 March 1999Quarter-final
First leg
InternazionaleH2–0Yorke (2) 6′, 45′54,430
17 March 1999Quarter-final
Second leg
InternazionaleA1–1Scholes 88′79,528
7 April 1999Semi-final
First leg
JuventusH1–1Giggs 90+2′54,487
21 April 1999Semi-final
Second leg
JuventusA3–2Keane 24′, Yorke 34′, Cole 84′60,806
26 May 1999FinalBayern MunichN2–1Sheringham 90+1′, Solskjær 90+3′91,000


Squad statistics

No.CL no.Pos.NameLeagueFA CupLeague CupEuropeOtherTotal
11GK Peter Schmeichel340800013010560
22DF Gary Neville341700012010541
33DF Denis Irwin26(3)261001201045(3)3
44DF David May4(2)0102000007(2)0
55DF Ronny Johnsen19(3)33(2)0106(2)01030(7)3
66DF Jaap Stam3016(1)0001301050(1)1
77MF David Beckham33(1)6710(1)01221053(2)9
88MF Nicky Butt22(9)250204(4)01034(13)2
99FW Andy Cole26(6)176(1)2001051043(7)24
1010FW Teddy Sheringham7(10)21(3)1112(2)10(1)011(16)5
1111MF Ryan Giggs20(4)35(1)210951036(5)10
1212DF Phil Neville19(9)04(3)0204(2)10(1)029(15)1
1329DF John Curtis1(3)0003000004(3)0
1414MF Jordi Cruyff0(5)200200(3)00(1)02(9)2
1515MF Jesper Blomqvist20(5)13(2)00(1)06(1)00029(9)1
1616MF Roy Keane (c)33(2)270001231053(2)5
1717GK Raimond van der Gouw4(1)0003000007(1)0
1818MF Paul Scholes24(7)63(3)10(1)010(2)41038(13)11
1919FW Dwight Yorke32185(3)3001180048(3)29
2020FW Ole Gunnar Solskjær9(10)124(4)1331(5)20(1)017(20)18
2121DF Henning Berg10(6)050303(1)00(1)021(8)0
2222FW Erik Nevland00000(1)100000(1)1
2323DF Michael Clegg000030000030
2430DF Wes Brown11(3)0200(1)03(1)00016(5)0
2828MF Philip Mulryne000020000020
29FW Alex Notman00000(1)000000(1)0
30DF Ronnie Wallwork00000(1)000000(1)0
3131GK Nick Culkin000000000000
3333MF Mark Wilson0000200(1)0002(1)0
3434MF Jonathan Greening0(3)00(1)03000003(4)0
38DF Danny Higginbotham000000000000