• Premier League

United seeking Sunderland revenge

ESPN staff
March 28, 2013 « Murray-Martinez to use instant replay | Chartbeat test »
Will van Persie find his form at the Stadium of Light?

Manchester United players and staff are heading to Sunderland on Saturday with only one thing on their minds - revenge.

On a dramatic final day of the season last year, the Red Devils beat the Black Cats at the Stadium of Light to give themselves hope of clinching a 20th league title. But a late Sergio Aguero winner at Etihad Stadium against QPR handed the title to arch-rivals Manchester City.

And in scenes that have not lost their potency with time for United, the Sunderland fans celebrated City's victory as if it was their own.

"It was a horrible experience and what happened at Sunderland has motivated us all season," Chris Smalling told The Sun.

Striker Wayne Rooney added: "It was something myself and a lot of the players won't forget. When the final whistle went, we didn't really know what the score at City was. But then we heard the Sunderland fans cheering.

"They didn't have the best of seasons so for them to be cheering like that was sad."

For United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, it brought the painful memories back of 20 years past when the club faltered at Liverpool to hand the title to Leeds.

"The young players came out that day and the Liverpool fans were asking for their autographs, Beckham, Giggs, Scholes, Neville, and they were tearing them up, tearing their autographs up," Ferguson recalled.

"I said to Giggs and the boys 'remember this day'.

"Those Sunderland fans were cheering for City.

"We won't forget that, I'm telling you."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Close