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Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Manchester United got off lightly: Here's five of the worst results ever


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Manchester City rocked the champions at Old Trafford, hitting Fergie's men for six, but Hugh Larkin recalls five of the worst beatings of all time.

As Chris Pettit reminded us elsewhere on this site - Manchester City's spectacular 6-1 victory at Old Trafford was the second jaw-dropping scoreline of this Premier League season - Manchester United inflicted something similar on Arsenal back in September, smashing eight goals past the Gunners defence.

Every so often top flight football gives up a freak score - the difference is that it's usually Manchester United and Arsenal handing out the punishment. Let's take a look at some other epic home losses.

Newcastle 1 Sunderland 9; 1908

This really is the benchmark for humiliating home defeats to your hated local rivals. It remains the biggest away win in an English top flight game and notable because the scores were level at half-time. Newcastle went in at 1-1 and were blitzed off the park when they came back out.

Sunderland actually netted eight times in a 28 minute spell - the scoring was over with 15 minutes of the half to go. Contemporary newspaper reports absolved keeper Lawrence of blame, but castigated the Magpies' defence and remarked that the visitors were much bigger and stronger than the home players.

Nottingham Forest 1 Manchester United 8; 1999

The modern day record for an away win in the Premier League. This match started with a bang as Forest equalised United's early strike in the sixth minute. It all went downhill from there though and ex-United boss Ron Atkinson needed all his famous chirpiness to get through this one.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer scored four times from the bench, all within 10 minutes - a record for a sub. No surprise that Forest went down in May and United won the Treble with Solskajaer performing his supersub act again in the Champions Laegue Final.

Clapton 0 Nottingham Forest 14; 1891

Funny how the same names crop up. Clapton entered the First Round of the FA Cup hoping for a giant-killing but ended up on the wrong end of the biggest away win in FA Cup history. There's not much detail about the game but Forest went out in the last eight, beaten 4-0 by Sunderland, who were then one of the best teams around.

Port Vale 0 Sheffield United 10; 1892

The record away win in the Football League. The home team were then Burslem Port Vale and in mitigation, this was their first season in League football. Add in the fact that a midfielder played in goal - in the middle of a snowstorm by all accounts - and you have the recipe for a freak result. Vale avoided bottom place in the 12 team division by two points.

Airdrie 1 Hibernian 11; 1959

You might say Hibs had a fairly decent forward line around the end of the 1950s. In 1959 they scored double figures on opposing grounds twice. In December they dumped 10 past Partick Thistle, but in October they went one better against hapless Airdrie.

For goals Hibs were the team to watch - a week after this demolition they enjoyed a 7-4 home win, but had started their own campaign with a 6-1 home drubbing to Rangers. In January their fans saw them draw 5-5 with Clyde, but they bounced back with a 4-3 win at Motherwell. At the end of the season they finished a modest seventh, but racked up no less than 106 goals in just 34 games - and conceded 85.

Related Articles:

Manchester City: Has the Blues' time come? Jack Heaney investigates

Silva and Balotelli are in, but who else made our Team of the Week? Mitch Waddon reveals his weekend wonders

Chris Pettitt's Outside the Box: Mancini's magicians spoil the party . . . and this column! Our TV critic sinks his teeth into the Sky pundits Neville and Redknapp at the Manchester derby

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Hugh Larkin

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