United’s best Boxing Day wins

We look back at United's best Boxing Day victories in the Premier League

Posted by Tom Bodell

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Manchester United, for all their recent troubles, remain the Premier League side with the best record on Boxing Day.

They were held to a draw at home by Burnley last season, but in previous years they have excelled during the festive period.

Since the tradition began, Manchester United have accumulated more points on Boxing Day than any other club in English football: 141, 18 more than next best Liverpool, who have 123.

Here we look back at some of the Red Devils’ most memorable Boxing Day victories.

Hull 2-3 Manchester United – 26 December 2013

This was a rare bright point in David Moyes’ brief Manchester United tenure. His side travelled to Hull in eighth, but on the back of four successive wins. It seemed he was beginning to rescue a disastrous start to the season.

But after just 13 minutes at the KC Stadium, United were 2-0 down. David Moyes looked despondent on the sidelines, a sight that would become all too familiar.

His players, though, managed to spare his blushes. Goals from Chris Smalling and Wayne Rooney levelled the scores before half time, and a James Chester own goal made it 3-2 after the break. It completed an almost Ferguson-esque comeback.

Moyes was delighted and insisted that his side could “challenge whoever is near the top”. Unfortunately, it didn’t quite work out that way.

Manchester United 4-3 Newcastle – 26 December 2012

Sir Alex Ferguson’s last Boxing Day in charge was typically memorable. United got the better of Newcastle at Old Trafford in a seven-goal thriller, having trailed three times.

Newcastle, under Alan Pardew, attacked with purpose and looked on course to win at Old Trafford for the first time since 1972. With 20 minutes to go, the Magpies were 3-2 up, but Robin Van Persie equalised and Javier Hernandez slid in to convert a cross with just minutes remaining.

It was a tough blow for Newcastle, but business as usual for United, who went on to comfortably win the title.

United are 13.00 to finish in the top four this season*

Manchester United 5-0 Wigan – 26 December 2011

Wigan could do little to stop a United side at their incisive, destructive best on Boxing Day of 2011. Dimitar Berbatov hit a hattrick and Park Ji-sung and Antonio Valencia added their names to the scoresheet.

This was a rout, more reminiscent of Boxing Day fixtures of old, when teams would play each other twice – on Christmas Day and Boxing Day – and often dish out a thrashing.

The victory put United on course for one of the most exhilarating title challenges in Premier League history. They finished level on points with Manchester City, but lost out on goal difference.

Manchester United 3-2 Everton – 26 December 2003

This was another Boxing Day classic, although it came during an unusually disappointing season. Ferguson and United could not match Arsenal’s Invincibles and finished 15 points behind them in third.

They still picked up their customary post-Christmas win, though. Goals from Nicky Butt, Kleberson – remember him? – and David Bellion gave United victory over Everton, who made a game of it but could not find a late equaliser.

Ferguson opted to rest several players, which perhaps made the game more of a contest. Everton finished 17ththat season, only narrowly avoiding relegation.

United are 1.27 to beat Huddersfield this Boxing Day*

Chelsea 2-3 Manchester United – 26 December 1994

Chelsea and Manchester United have shared plenty of memorable encounters in the Premier League era. Their meeting on Boxing Day 1994, though, is something of a forgotten classic.

United, who would eventually lose out by one point to Blackburn Rovers in the title race, raced into a 2-0 lead courtesy of goals from Mark Hughes and Eric Cantona.

John Spencer pulled a goal back from the penalty spot after half time, before Eddie Newton levelled with 77 minutes played. Almost immediately after kick off, though, United were back in front through Brian McClair, whose goal was enough to secure three points.

*Odds subject to change

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