Former Manchester United striker Teddy Sheringham has opened up the ecstasy of leading the team to Champions League glory in 1999.
Sheringham was not only part of the famous treble-winning United team, but he came off the bench to make the equalizer and put in the assist for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s winner in overtime. Not bad.
Sheringham actually joined Solskjaer on the bench to start the match, with Sir Alex Ferguson favoring the iconic duo Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole, but the two starters were powerless to find a way through Bayern, taking an early lead through Mario Basler.
“Sir Alex came to me at half time and we lost 1-0 and he said ‘just so you know my son, if we still lose 1-0 after 15 minutes, you will continue so make sure you are ready “, Sheringham reminded UEFA. “So I sat there for the next 15 minutes thinking ‘please don’t score, please don’t score’.
“Man Utd supporters may not understand it or like the sound of it, but I wanted to be a part of this game, so I sat there every time someone attacked, ‘please do not score’. When he nodded that I was going .. I remember standing next to the pitch and he whispered to me ‘just go out and change the game for us, you’ve done it a few times this season. Go out and do your best to change the game ‘. “
Sheringham went into the 67th minute, but just like Cole and Yorke before him, he struggled to get through Bayern’s stubborn defense, and all hope seemed lost when the clock ticked in the 91st minute.
United won a corner. Goalkeeper Peter Schmeichel came forward to try to save the day, but that job was left to Sheringham. The striker was in the right place at the right time to meet a shot from Ryan Giggs and convert the ball to the back of the net to set up a famous final.
“I tried to hit it as hard as I could, but it rubbed off my sock, off my ankle and scratched past the goalkeeper,” he continued. “I knew I was in place but when I turned away to go and celebrate I just had to look over my shoulder to make sure the lineman did not raise his flag. I saw him with his hands down, and it was like “wow I’m off, I’m going to celebrate right in front of Manchester United fans up against the fence there.
Sheringham and Beckham celebrate with the trophy / PATRICK HERTZOG / GettyImages
“They were going crazy, everyone was jumping on us and it’s like, ‘we’re back in this game, we have a chance to win this now and this is going to be extra time.’ 20 seconds later Ole got the ball on the left edge, tried to take the defender on, tried to cross it took a deflection went out for another corner. “
The fans roared as David Beckham crossed to take the corner and Sheringham wanted a second goal.
“I walk in the box and now I feel ten feet tall,” he said. “I think of Becks, ‘we’ve done this on so many occasions, you put it exactly where I like it, I’ll do it and I’ll score goals.”
“When he put the ball in, I came across my husband. I got up to head it, but I knew instinctively that I had jumped a little too early. If I nodded it towards goal, it would go over the crossbar. I thought all I could do was to head into an area by the far post and hope one of my friends was there.
Sheringham won flick-on for winner / Ben Radford / GettyImages
“I was out of balance, but I saw Ole put it on the roof online. The ecstasy from everyone … it just exploded. The Bayern end went completely dead, the players were on the floor, and we were just … how do you explain it? ? These things do not happen.
“Ole went to the same part of the fence that I had celebrated at. The submarines came running, it was just chaos. We woke up back to the center circle about two minutes after the finish. 20 seconds after that, the final signal went and it was pure ecstasy. People ask “Is it better to score than six?” and I think it was that night. “
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