There are few players to grace the game as charismatic and tenacious as the great Dane, Peter Schmeichel. A menace between the sticks; his razor-sharp agility and stone-cold nerve during one-on-ones made the Manchester United player one of the most revered goalkeepers in football.
Furthermore, today marks the anniversary of when a young-ish Alex Ferguson dubbed the signing of a young danish international as the ‘bargain of the century’ . 27 years later and the argument of United’s greatest ever goalkeeper still swings Schmeichel’s ways. Here is his top 5 saves for Manchester United:
The build-up play had a goal written all over it. A neat and tidy touch within the box from Don Hutchison, followed by a beautiful connection on the volley looked all but enough to send the Kop end mad. However, just as little Donny’ was about to wield away in adulation, Peter the friendly goal-tender pulls out a ‘worldie’ of stops and secures a 2-1 win for Manchester United.
When your good, your good. Peter initially makes an absolute hash of the first parry but then within the millisecond, the world witness an incredible reflex defying stop. Sometimes your biggest competition is yourself, eh Pete? Check out his amazing double save against Barcelona in the 1998/1999 season, the year of the treble.
Trevor Morley, heard of him? Probably not. Trevor sits awake most nights pondering of what more he could have done to beat Schmeichel when his West Ham side met United in 93/94. A dipping looping header, the ball strenuously spinning away from the keeper, post-stamped for the bottom right-hand corner. Then just like that, yet another world-class save. Peter tips the ball against the post and destroys Trevor’s hopes of immortalisation.
They say a good goalkeeper can save you 9-12 points a season. Judging by the example above, they’ve got a point. With a Manchester United team stuck in the frontline of yet another title battle, their performance against Coventry fell flat of their usual standards. On a night of frustrating performances, Peter Schmeichel proved again to be the difference. An audacious fingertip save, deflecting Chris Marsden’s effort onto the post was enough to secure his side a hard-fought 1-0 victory.
Arguably his greatest ever save in United jersey. It was a frosty night in Vienna, the Dane was stripped in his quintessential 90’s joggers and dodgy away strip. The stage was set for a save of orgasmic proportions. Further down the years, the Dane referred to it as his proudest moment for the club in an interview with FourFourTwo magazine. We can see why.