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Result: Manchester United 4, Real Madrid 3

After this thrilling and epic encounter between these two European heavyweights it was Real Madrid who progressed to the semi-finals of the Champions League, in what can only be described as one of the greatest games to have ever graced the competition.

Trailing 3-1 from the first leg, Sir Alex Ferguson knew his side would have to produce a performance of titanic proportion if they were to overturn the deficit and knockout their illustrious rivals.

The atmosphere at Old Trafford was electric and Manchester United, eager to appease their supporters' optimism, started the game at a high tempo, having plenty of the ball and closing down their opponents at every opportunity.

It was not long before United created their first shot on goal. Ruud Van Nistelrooy cleverly cut inside two defenders before unleashing a fierce drive which Iker Casillas did well to parry over the bar.

However, in the twelve minute their good work and promising start was undone by a swift counter attacking move which saw Guti release Ronaldo into space. In a seemingly wide position he hit a low first time shot from the edge of the area that beat Fabien Barthez at his near post to stun the home fans into silence.

This seemed to spur United into playing more openly and for the remainder of the half set the pattern of play with United having plenty of possession and Real posing a constant threat on the counter attack. As half-time approached the home side injected some much needed urgency in their play, twice forcing Casillas into action. Then with just two minutes until the break United were awarded a free-kick. Hoisted deep into the area, Real's defenders struggled to cope and from a loose ball Ryan Giggs smartly played in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to cross for Van Nistelrooy at the far post to tap into an empty net. So at the break honours were even.

With barely five minutes of the second-half played, another mesmerising move from Real saw Ronaldo sweep home a cross from the rampaging Roberto Carlos.

Almost immediately, United equalized as a flowing move from right to left saw Ivan Helguera inadvertently steer the ball into his own net, much to the delight of the home crowd. United now began to apply some concerted and sustained pressure and Casillas was once again called into action, making smart saves to deny Solskjaer and Seba Veron.

On the hour mark the hosts defensive misgivings were all too apparent again as Ronaldo picked up the ball in a deep position and was allowed to advance unopposed before hitting an Exocet that flew into the United net to complete his hat-trick, leaving the Old Trafford crowd shell-shocked and in need of a miracle.

The introduction of David Beckham, surprisingly omitted from the team, was met with a rapturous applause and it did not take him long to sustain that adulation as he majestically curled in a trademark free-kick to level the scores once again.

The next twenty minutes was end-to-end football played at a breathtaking pace and with five minutes to go, Old Trafford erupted as Beckham forced the ball home from close range. Eventually, the referee blew his whistle and brought to an end a magnificent and exhilarating spectacle that will go down as one of the greatest matches of all time.