As Rio Ferdinand lifted the League Cup into the Wembley air on Sunday afternoon, most thoughts turned to the idea of a United clean sweep, an unprecedented 5 trophies; World Club Cup, League Cup, FA Cup, Premiership and Champions League. Even if United did managed to blow away all in their path and secure a further three trophies, will everyone forget the other two trophies that were contested this season, and the fact that United have already completed a Treble this season?
A game at Wembley on the 10th August 2008 seems to have been forgotten. Granted, the game was nothing to write home about, but when Glen Johnson failed to convert Portsmouth’s fourth penalty kick, Manchester United lifted the 2008 Community Shield.
People may dismiss the Community Shield as not being worthy of being grouped with the FA Cup, Premiership or Champions League, but was it any more difficult to win than the World Club Cup? United had to win the Premiership in order to qualify for the ‘final’, and they had to win the Champions League to get to the World Club Cup. The finals of both competitions were hardly difficult for Manchester United, regardless of how FIFA or South America views their precious competition. So surely if the World Club Cup counts towards a quintuple, the Community Shield counts towards sextuple?
Just over two weeks after the Community Shield, United then lost all hope of completing a ‘clean sweep’. When Daniel Miguel Alves Gomes put Zenit St Petersburg 2-0 up in the Stade Louis II in Monaco, United could not claw back the defecit and eventually lost 2-1, missing out on lifting the 2008 UEFA Super Cup. It is because of this game that United’s quintuple, not matter how amazing, will never be a ‘clean sweep’. Once again, if the Super Cup and Community Shield are ignored from the arguement, then so should the World Club Cup, and once again the name changes to the quadruple.
That said, United’s sextuple is something to look forward to…