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John Murray
"United have now achieved a remarkable quadruple in 1999"
 real 28k

Man of the match Ryan Giggs
"I'll be giving the car to my brother"
 real 28k

Tuesday, 30 November, 1999, 18:56 GMT
Man Utd crowned world champions
Man Utd celebrate their unique quadruple achievement

Man Utd 1-0 Palmeiras

Manchester United became the first British club to be crowned world champions, defeating South American side Palmeiras by a single goal in Tokyo.

Captain Roy Keane won the match when he slotted home from close range in the first half after a superb running cross from Welsh wizard Ryan Giggs.

Giggs' efforts earned him the man of the match award - and a new car.

Ferguson's tired players meet Everton next
But Sir Alex Ferguson also had keeper Mark Bosnich to thank for victory in the Toyota Cup, the annual clash between the best team in Europe and South America.

Bosnich rebuffed a furious second-half comeback by the South American champions.

Palmeiras striker Nunez, substitute Oseas and excellent midfielder Alex were all denied by the reflexes of the Australian keeper.

David Beckham had been the centre of attention since he arrived in Japan and he was at the centre of Man United's most promising moves at the Olympic Stadium.
Match action
20: Ref rejects penalty appeal by Alex
35: Roy Keane scores for Man Utd
41: Silvestre makes goal-line clearance from Alex
58: Giggs misses easy chance for second goal
69: Alex header grazes post
74: Bosnich saves point-blank from Oseas header


With Paul Scholes and Keane alongside him at their terrier-like best, the Premiership holders completely dominated the midfield in the opening 20 minutes.

But Palmeiras slowly began to reveal their potency, Alex and Asprilla cutting open the English side's defence.

With the game finely balanced, Giggs produced the flash of skill that tipped it United's way.


I'm very pleased we've become the first English team to win the world championship. This is very special.
Sir Alex Ferguson
Ten minutes before the interval, Giggs's clever shimmy took him past the Palmeiras right-back.

His superb high-cross completely deceived keeper Marcos, whose blunder allowed Keane to side-foot the simplest of goals at the far post.

Keane's troops went into the interval ahead but only marginally on top, Silvestre hooking a 41st minute header from the line to deny Palmeiras an equaliser.

It needed Silvestre to hook this header from the line
Bosnich preserved the lead again seconds into the second half when he raced out to close down Asprilla, clean through after Jaap Stam was beaten to a long, high ball.

The 60,000 crowd had their first glimpse of Caribbean hero Dwight Yorke in the second half, Solksjaer making way.

Palmeiras made their own switch, 34-year-old top scorer Evair replacing Galeano.

He was immediately presented with a chance to strike on goal after a slip by Beckham on the halfway line. But he dallied and was dispossessed by Beckham, who raced back 40 yards to make up the ground.

Alex was arguably the best player on the pitch
The European champions were living dangerously but should have given themselves a valuable two-goal cushion in the 58th minute after Yorke slipped unnoticed into the box.

He teed the ball up for Giggs from ten yards but his chip drifted well wide of the gaping goal. Giggs squandered several more chances before the final whistle.

Palmeiras were slowly winding up the tempo but were equally wasteful.

Left-back Junior was making ever-more threatening runs up the flank and it was his curling cross which set up Alex for their best chance of the game.

Statistics:
Man U-Palm'ras
Corners 6....12
Offsides 16....13
Shots on target 1....4
Shots off target 7....11
Yellow cards 1....1
Red cards 0....0
His run was ignored by everyone in a red shirt and though his powerful header beat the rooted Bosnich, it grazed the wrong side of the post.

Ferguson's side appeared to be playing within themselves, content to let the South Amercians provide the entertainment for the Japanese spectators.

Bosnich again came to the rescue with three world-class saves before the final whistle.

First he denied Oseas' point-blank header with a reflex stop, then he foiled a classic counter-attack by the pacy Junior before finally tipping over Alex's spectacular 18-yard volley.

Up for it: Stam and Asprilla battle for the ball
The onslaught was only ended by German referee Hellmut Krug blowing for full-time.

Their reign as world champions could last just over a month, for in January they compete in Fifa's inaugual World Club Championships which supercedes this competition.

But first they have the more pressing matter of next week's Champions League meeting with Valencia to attend to. Defeat is likely to mean an early exit for the holders.

Teams:

Manchester United: Mark Bosnich, Dennis Irwin, Jaap Stam, Gary Neville, Mickael Silvestre, Roy Keane, Paul Scholes, Nicky Butt, David Beckham, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Ryan Giggs.
Subs: Taibi, P. Neville, Wallwork, Higginbottom, Fortune, Sheringham, Yorke.

Palmeiras: Marcos, Junior Baiano, Francisco Arce, Junior, Roque Junior, Zinho, Cesar Sampaio, Galeano, Alex, Faustino Asprilla, Paulo Nunes.
Subs: Sergio, Conceicao, Regis, T. dos Santos, Paulino, Carvalho, O. dos Santos.

Referee: Hellmut Krug (Ger)
Assistant referees: Jeon Young-Hyun (Kor), Yoshikazu Hiroshima (Jpn)

Fourth official: Masayoshi Okada (Jpn)

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See also:
30 Nov 99 |  Football
Good, but not that good
29 Nov 99 |  Football
Fergie defends Japanese trip
24 Nov 99 |  Champions League
Man Utd flounder in Florence
Links to other Football stories are at the foot of the page.