Return Of The King

Today it’s twenty years since the glorious return of Eric Cantona.

I remember the game vividly. I was listening on a portable AM radio with a terrible crackle, the score loaded on Ceefax just in case. These were the days before the internet. We couldn’t afford Sky.

He couldn’t have come back in a bigger game - against Liverpool at Old Trafford. He set up Nicky Butt in the opening minutes, before Liverpool took the lead through a couple of Robbie Fowler goals. The equaliser came with twenty minutes to go. It was only a penalty, but that didn’t matter.

On scoring he leapt towards the crowd and swung around the stanchion at the goal, referencing his previous entry into the crowd at Selhurst Park.

It was euphoric.

Under lesser managers he would have never returned. Ferguson had talked him back into the team, supporting him throughout his ban.

It’s a shame he went too soon, but for a time Eric was The King.