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January 1999

Following such poor December, Manchester United were expected to fade away in their challenge for honours but it could not be further away from the truth as the adversity seemed to galvanize the Red Devils and they embarked on a sensational run after the turn of the year, winning all their matches and gaining momentum in the Premier League as well as the FA Cup.


United started off by exacting revenge over Middlesbrough in the FA Cup 3rd round clash, before thumping wins over West Ham United and Leicester City put the Red Devils in good stead in the Premier League as well.


Then a remarkable FA cup tie win against Liverpool followed, which probably handed Sir Alex’s men the belief that they could go on to achieve something great.


3/1/1999
Manchester United 3 – 1 Middlesbrough
Venue – Old Trafford (FA Cup)

Middlesbrough had grabbed a shock victory when they visited Old Trafford a few weeks ago in the Premier League and for a while it seemed that Bryan Robson’s men would cause another upset, this time in the FA Cup after Andy Townsend handed Boro the lead early into the second half.


However, United displayed great resilience to mount a wonderful comeback as goals from Andy Cole, Denis Irwin and Ryan Giggs meant that the Red Devils were able to exact revenge on Middlesbrough and progress into the 4th round of the competition.


10/1/1999
Manchester United 4 – 1 West Ham United
Venue – Old Trafford

Building on from their fine win in the FA Cup, United secured a convincing victory over West Ham United in the Premier League, the following week.


Dwight Yorke handed United an early lead before Andy Cole doubled the hosts’ advantage ahead of the interval.  The Red Devils then took an unassailable three goal lead through a strike by Cole again, before Ole Gunnar Solskjaer put the icing on the game with a fine header.


Frank Lampard grabbed a late consolation for the Hammers but the result was never in doubt.


16/1/1999
Leicester City 2 – 6 Manchester United
Venue – Filbert Street

It was the Dwight Yorke and Andy Cole show once again as Manchester United romped to another huge victory, this time over Leicester City at Filbert Street.


Yoke opened the scoring for United early but a wonderful Theo Zagorakis goal restored parity with a fine strike from 30 yards to send the two teams level into the break.


Following the interval, Sir Alex’s men were simply unstoppable as they raced to a 4-1 lead through two quickfire goals from Andy Cole plus another Yorke strike.


While Steve Walsh did grab a second for the Foxes, Manchester United were in no mood of letting up as Yorke grabbed his hattrick, before even Jaap Stam got in on the act by scoring his first ever goal for the club.


24/1/1999
Manchester United 2 – 1 Liverpool
Venue – Old Trafford

In arguably one of the games of the season, Manchester United registered a dramatic 2-1 victory over Liverpool at Old Trafford to seal their place in the sixth round of the FA Cup.


However, it seemed for a long time that United would probably have to keep their hopes of winning the FA Cup on hold till next season after Michael Owen handed the Reds an early lead.


The Red Devils relentlessly pressed for the equalizer, hitting the bar twice and coming mightily close on several occasions but after seeing all their efforts not find its way into the back of the net,  one could have been forgiven for thinking that it would not be United’s day.


Despite the setbacks though, United kept on pushing and finally got the leveler through Dwight Yorke in the 88th minute of the game to seemingly force a replay. However, the hosts mustered another late rally to grab the win as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer kept his cool to slot the ball home under pressure and the goal sparked scenes of delirium inside Old Trafford.


31/1/1999

Charlton Athletic 0 – 1 Manchester United

Venue – The Valley

Following their wonderful last minute victory over Liverpool, United grabbed another late win in the Premier League against Charlton Athletic to complete the month with five wins in five.


While probably not as dramatic as the Liverpool victory, the win over Charlton was certainly as important.


After being frustrated by the hosts for the majority of the game, United looked set to drop two valuable points in the title race. However, it was Dwight Yorke who once again popped up with another late strike in the 89th minute to break Charlton hearts and send the Red Devils back home with grip at the summit of the Premier League table firmly intact.


Star Performer of the Month:
Dwight Yorke

Following a lean December, Yorke found his goalscoring touch once again after the turn of the year and was absolutely vital in Manchester United’s fine run in January.


The striker scored six goals in five games but more than the quantity, it was the importance of the goals he scored which would have delighted his manager as well as the fans.








League Table

Pos

Team

Pld

Pts

GD

1st

Manchester United

23

44

+24

2nd

Chelsea

23

43

+15

3rd

Aston Villa

23

43

+13

4th

Arsenal

23

42

+13

5th

Leeds United

23

36

+13

Results - January 1999

Date

Comp

Opp

Venue

Score

3rd

FA Cup

Middlesbro’

H

3-1

10th

Premier
League

West Ham
United

H

4-1

16th

Premier
League

Leicester
City

A

6-2

24th

FA Cup

Liverpool

H

2-1

31st

Premier
League

Charlton
Athletic

A

1-0