On this day: Manchester United win unprecedented treble

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer celebrates scoring the winning goal in the Champions League final for Manchester United on May 26, 1999.
© Getty Images
Back on this day in 1999, Manchester United secure a treble of trophies in one season by winning the Champions League in dramatic fashion.

When Manchester United recorded a 2-0 Wembley victory over Newcastle United in 1999, it secured a third Premier League and FA Cup double for the club in five years.

Winning those trophies was a feat previously achieved by the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur, but none of those sides were able to add Europe's top competition to their haul. That opportunity presented itself to United 15 years ago today inside Barcelona's Camp Nou, where Bayern Munich, whom they had drawn with twice in the group stages, would be their opponents.

Throughout the campaign, United had played attack-minded football, which had swept most of their opposition aside. Yet, in Spain's second city, Sir Alex Ferguson's side produced one of their most toothless performances of the 1998-99 term.

They were rocked as early as the sixth minute when Bayern's Mario Basler curled a low free kick into the bottom corner of the United net, with goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel, who was playing his last game for the club ahead of his switch to Sporting Lisbon, unsighted.

United had scored 126 goals in all competitions up until this point, with strike partners Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole particularly prolific. However, neither of that duo could have much of an impact as Bayern continued to dominate proceedings.

In the second half, Bayern poured forward in search of a second goal, but their luck was out. Substitute Mehmet Scholl saw his chipped effort cannon back into Schmeichel's hands off the post, while with five minutes remaining, Carsten Jancker's overhead kick struck the crossbar.

As that was happening, Ferguson had turned to Teddy Sheringham and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, who had ably assisted Yorke and Cole throughout the course of the season. They would prove to be the best two substitutions that the Scottish manager would ever make.

In the first minute of stoppage time, David Beckham's corner from the left flank was cleared only as far as Ryan Giggs on the edge of the Bayern area. The Welsh winger's scuffed shot was drifting wide, but an alert Sheringham stuck out a boot to divert the ball inside Oliver Kahn's post.

United had been revived, but with extra time looming, they inflicted the killer blow that Bayern had failed to summon. The clock read 93 minutes as United forced another corner, which Beckham once again swung into the German's box. Sheringham rose highest to flick the ball on for an unmarked Solskjaer, who lifted it into the roof of Kahn's net, sparking scenes of wild celebration.

Moments later, Italian referee Pierluigi Collina blew the final whistle, ensuring that United had snatched victory from the jaws of defeat. Fittingly, the fixture was played on the date that would have marked the late Sir Matt Busby's 90th birthday. Back in 1968, Busby guided the club to their first ever European Cup success - this, 31 years on, was their second.

MAN UNITED: Schmeichel; Irwin, Johnsen, Stam, G Neville; Blomqvist (Sheringham), Beckham, Butt, Giggs; Cole (Solskjaer), Yorke

BAYERN: Kahn; Matthaus (Fink), Babbel, Linke, Kuffour, Tarnat; Effenberg, Jeremies, Basler (Salihamidzic); Jancker, Zickler (Scholl)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer celebrates scoring the winning goal in the Champions League final for Manchester United on May 26, 1999.
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