Competition: FA Cup Semi-Final.
Attendance: 65,000 (Receipts £32,413).
Referee: R.H. Windle (Chesterfield, Derbyshire).
It was United’s first FA Cup
Semi-Final and the farthest they had ever advanced in the Cup. They had been
locked in a struggle for League supremacy with
Leeds had Albert Johanneson on the
left wing in place of Terry Cooper in an otherwise unchanged team from their
emphatic Sixth Round win at Crystal Palace. However,
A capacity crowd at Hillsborough witnessed the two teams locked in a titanic and often fiery encounter. Neither team asked, or gave, an inch with tempers fraying and shirts being torn as tackles flew in hard and fast on the heavy pitch. With players like Sprake, Charlton and Hunter, who stood no nonsense in defence and the fiercely combative Bremner and Giles in midfield and the very aggressive Bobby Collins leading the charge by example faced with the likes of Crerand Stiles and Law, who were no known for their genteelness, it was an explosive cocktail which could explode at any time.
Denis Law motivated the first flashpoint when he checked
Jack Charlton and fighting broke out amongst six players with Charlton being butted
in the process. Bremner set the tone chopping down
Bobby Charlton in full flight, even arousing the usually calm
United started to get their game together and Peacock, Storrie and Johanneson threatened
There was mass media criticism of referee Dick Windle’s handling of the squalid and brutal Semi-Final with some newspapers calling for him to be replaced for the replay. Tension had never been far from the surface as the two teams locked horns in a snarling encounter. The most significant incident occurred when Nobby Stiles brought down Albert Johanneson forcing him out of the replay with damaged knee ligaments.
Neither club’s reputation was enhanced. And both teams were
roundly condemned by the press as it finished goalless, with
Pat Crerand tackles Billy Bremner and tempers become frayed, as Law and Stiles, and Collins and Hunter, join the melee
Jack and Bobby Charlton
leave the pitch together
at the end of the game