#10 Goal v Blackpool (H) Premier League 22/05/2011
Michael Owen may have lost a yard of pace compared to earlier in his career, however when he was put in a one-on-one situation there was still nobody better. In the last game of United’s league winning campaign of 2011, Owen was released through on goal by an Anderson pass to slot home the Reds fourth goal in a 4-2 win. This strike turned out to be Michael Owen’s last ever goal at Old Trafford and it fittingly typified his cold-eyed execution in front of goal.
#9 Goal v Southampton (A) F.A. Cup 4th Round 29/01/2011
This F.A. Cup tie offered United’s number seven a rare start up front and he did not waste his opportunity to impress. With the Reds trailing 1-0 to League One side Southampton there looked like there could be an F.A. Cup giant-killing on the cards. However, whenever you are in need of a goal you would want the ball to fall to Michael Owen in the box; and it did mid-way through the second half with the inevitable outcome. Owen headed home the equaliser for Fergie’s men and United went on to win the game 2-1.
#8 Goal v Aldershot (A) Carling Cup 4th Round 26/10/2011
United went into this Carling Cup tie against Aldershot just two days after the 6-1 defeat to City at Old Trafford. They say the best way to get a defeat out of your system is to win the next match and Michael Owen helped the Reds to achieve this by scoring United’s second goal in a 3-0 win. With this goal being Michael Owen’s last ever goal for Manchester United it makes it worthy of a mention in his top ten Manchester United moments.
#7 Two Goals v Scunthorpe (A) Carling Cup 3rd Round 22/09/2010
Owen was yet to make a start in the 2010/11 campaign before this Carling Cup tie away to Scunthorpe so the striker was looking to make the most of his chance. After neatly scoring a one-on-one and then netting a tap-in, Michael Owen looked to be heading back to his old goal scoring ways in this 5-2 win. He then scored in his next match against Bolton and as a result, a week later he was awarded his first Premier League start in nearly ten months against Sunderland.
#6 Two Goals v Leeds (A) Carling Cup 3rd Round 20/09/2011
Any goal against Leeds is a good goal, however these two strikes by Michael Owen were classic finishes in their own right. After rolling United’s first goal into the bottom corner of the net, he then smashed a screamer into the top corner to put the Reds 2-0 up. Fergie’s men ran-out 3-0 winners, and in the process they eradicated the memory of Leeds’ giant-killing act at Old Trafford eighteen months earlier.
#5 Goal v Bolton Wanderers (A) Premier League 26/09/2010
Michael Owen spent most of his Manchester United career on the substitute’s bench after injury set-backs and strong competition up-front limited his starting roles. Due to his potency in the penalty area, he only needed a sniff of a chance to score, therefore his impact off the bench was always dangerous for the opposing teams. With time running out in this match against Bolton and United needing and equaliser, Owen’s influence as a super-sub was immediate. He equalised late on with a header to salvage a 2-2 draw and in the process preserved United’s unbeaten league record.
#4 Goal v Wigan (A) Premier League 22/08/2009
Michael Owen did not take long to get his goalscoring tally for the Reds up and running when he bagged United’s fourth goal in a 5-0 win against Wigan after coming on as a second half substitute. After finding himself in the box he dinked the ball majestically over the oncoming keeper into the far corner of the net to prove to world that he still had it; and showed that Sir Alex Ferguson might have pulled of a tidy bit of business in the summer with his free-transfer.
#3 Goal v Aston Villa (N) League Cup Final 28/02/2010
Michael Owen’s consistent performances in the earlier rounds of the Carling Cup earned the number seven a starting role in the final against Aston Villa at Wembley. After United had conceded early in the game, Owen equalised with a tidy finish just inside the box. Unfortunately he pulled a hamstring moments later in what proved to be a bitter-sweet day for the goal-scorer. United went on to win the cup with a late Rooney winner, however Owen remained side-lined through injury for the rest of the season.
#2 Hat trick v Wolfsburg (A) Champions League 08/12/2009
One of Michael Owen’s defining moments as a player was his hat trick for England against Germany eight years previous to this Champions League group match. Many critics believed that the striker could not achieve these dizzy heights again in his career; so what was Owen’s response? Another hat trick in Germany against German opposition. Thanks to Michael’s clinical finishing that night, United performed a classic European smash and grab raid to notch a 3-1 victory and claim the top spot in the group.
#1 Goal v Manchester City (H) Premier League 20/09/2009
United looked to have bagged all three points in this match with 89 minutes on the clock but a mistake from Rio Ferdinand gifted Bellamy his second and City’s third goal of the game making the score 3-3. United hung their heads in despair as Mark Hughes’s men had somehow earned a draw. However, there was twist in the tale, a twist so dramatic that the fairy tale writers hung up their quills for good. That little striker who had crossed the bitter divide to play for a rival club found himself in the box with the ball at his feet, but this time it wasn’t the multi-million pound Tevez, it was free transfer Michael Owen who once donned the scouse jersey. He now became an honorary Manc by sliding home a 96th minute winner to silence the noisy neighbours and in the process put his name firmly into Manchester United folklore.
By Sean McGuire
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