FourFourTwo's best 100 Premier League matches ever: 30-21

Featuring final-day survival and two Manchester derbies

Words: Gary ParkinsonPhil HaighRik SharmaJamie Orrell

30. Man United 9-0 Ipswich, 04/03/1995

This was a cold-blooded revenge killing. Ipswich had beaten Manchester United 3-2 earlier in the season, and Alex Ferguson’s side were out for payback. Roy Keane made United’s intentions clear by opening the scoring after just 15 minutes, before Andy Cole decided to score five goals. As you do.

Mark Hughes also chipped in with two, while Paul Ince even found himself on the scoresheet. It was a particularly bad day at the office for Ipswich goalkeeper Craig Forrest, who would later suffer a 7-1 battering at the hands of United while playing for West Ham.

Though this emphatic victory saw the Red Devils wipe out Blackburn’s goal difference advantage at the top of the league, they still ended up finishing second to the men from Ewood Park. RS

29. Oldham 4-3 Southampton, 08/05/1993

The first ever Premier League relegation dog fight came to a head at Boundary Park: Oldham needed to win and hope Crystal Palace lost at Arsenal to have any chance of survival. The Latics were therefore going all out for the required three points, while the fact that Southampton had nothing to lose made for a thrilling contest. 

Neil Pointon gave Oldham the lead after half an hour, scoring directly from a corner, only for Matt Le Tissier to volley Saints level minutes later. Ian Olney put the Latics back in front just before the break, with Andy Ritchie heading in a third not long after the interval. When Gunnar Halle made if four it seemed as though it would be a smooth ride from there on in, but Le Tissier had other ideas.

The Saints hero quickly pulled one back, placing a 25-yard free-kick in the bottom corner, before heading in his third with five minutes left. But not even Le Tissier could prevent an Oldham win, and with Palace succumbing to a 3-0 loss at Highbury, Joe Royle’s side remained in the top flight. PH

28. Sheff United 1-2 Wigan, 13/05/2007

With Charlton and Watford already down, Sheffield United and Wigan were two of three teams battling to avoid the final relegation spot. Wigan knew only a win would be enough to survive, with the Blades safe unless they lost and fellow scrappers West Ham got a point from their match at Old Trafford.

Paul Scharner’s early opener for Wigan was cancelled out by Jon Stead, but the visitors were back in front just before the break thanks to a David Unsworth penalty. At the same time, Carlos Tevez was giving West Ham the lead against Manchester United.

Despite great pressure, the Blades were unable to force a second-half equaliser; with West Ham holding on further west, that meant they were down. To rub salt into United’s already gaping wounds, Wigan match-winner Unsworth had been allowed to move from Brammall Lane to the Latics on a free transfer just five months earlier. They presumably regretted that decision. PH

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