West Ham Man United 1995 Ludek Miklosko

01 April 2011 09:31
Michael Hughes cannot avoid being remembered as the man who stopped Manchester United from winning the title in 1995.

But the former West Ham midfielder is adamant it is not his fault. He says it was all Ludek Miklosko's doing.

The Hammers can put a real dent in United's title challenge at Upton Park today but even victory will not match up to a sunny Sunday afternoon on May 14, 1995.

Opener: Michael Hughes celebrates with Trevor Morley as Paul Ince watches on



The story goes: United needed to beat West Ham and hope Blackburn dropped points at, of all places, Liverpool.

JamieRedknapp's injury time free-kick snatched a 2-1 victory for Liverpoolbut Hughes' goal and Miklosko's heroics ended United's title dream onthe most dramatic final day in Premier League history.

'Beingfrom Northern Ireland, I know a lot of United supporters and theyalways tell me I stopped United from winning the League,' Hughes toldSportsmail.

'But Ialways tell them: 'It wasn't my fault. It was Ludo Miklosko!'' 'I don'tthink I touched the ball for the first 20 minutes.  But the next thingI remember was Matty Holmes bombing down the left wing and me driftinginto the box and the ball coming to me.

'Chuffed to bits': martin Allen was glad to help his friend Tony Gale win the title with Blackburn

'I just hit and it ended up in the bottom corner. The rest of that half was just a blur to be honest.

'Brian McClair scored early in the second half, then it was end-to-end for a bit. But in the last 20 minutes they had about 18 chances when Miklosko was unbelievable.

'I don't know how he saved some of the things he saved that day. It wasn't meant to be for United that season - it was as simple as that.' Given Miklosko's once in a lifetime display, it seemed written for Blackburn to lift the trophy that day - not that was any consolation for United defender Gary Pallister.

Let-off: Kenny Dalglish's Blackburn were presented the trophy at Anfield

The former United stalwart recalled: 'We didn't expect Liverpool to do us a favour. But they did - and we just failed to do our job.

'Your feelings are just one of incredible disappointment. It was nine months of hard work and fighting, gone down the drain.

'A few days later we lost the FA Cup final to Everton because we couldn't lift ourselves from that disappointment. We were still on the floor.

'All in all it was the worst feeling I've ever had in football.' West Ham supporters celebrated like they had won the league themselves, stopping United from lifting the trophy was obviously the next best thing.

But former Hammer Martin Allen insists ending United's dream was the last thing on his mind.

The Barnet manager said: 'The thing that struck me most about the day was that none of the West Ham players warmed up.

'Wewere safe from relegation, we were totally relaxed and there was notension.  'But the main reason was that the very next morning 22 of uswere flying to Australia for a two week end-of-season tour.

'I remember it as clear as night andday. I was sitting in the little gym at the back of the main stand withIan Bishop and Julian Dicks - you name the person he was sitting inthat room.

'The only person that warmed up was Ludo - and it showed because he was phenomenal.

'There was no extra motivation from us to stop United winning the league. What we really wanted was to help Tony Gale win a championship winners medal.

'We were chuffed to bits for Tony and we were pleased we had helped our mate.'

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Source: Daily_Mail