The 1991 European Super Cup marked a significant moment for Manchester United as they clinched their first and only title in this competition by defeating Red Star Belgrade. Originally planned as a two-leg match, it was condensed into a single leg at Manchester United’s home ground, Old Trafford, due to the political unrest in Yugoslavia.
The game was intense, with 22,110 passionate fans filling the stadium. Red Star Belgrade dominated the first half, but Manchester United’s defense thwarted their attempts. In the second half, Red Star launched a strong offensive, met with a resilient Manchester United defense. The thrilling match concluded with Brian McClair’s 67th-minute goal, securing a 1-0 victory for Manchester United.
Red Star Belgrade earned their spot in the Super Cup after winning the 1990-91 European Cup, while Manchester United qualified by winning the 1990-91 European Cup Winners’ Cup. This event marked the first Super Cup appearance for both teams.
The match held historical significance as the first competitive encounter between Manchester United and Red Star Belgrade since their tragic 1957-58 European Cup quarter-final, marred by the infamous Munich air disaster. Sir Matt Busby, the manager during that time, added a poignant layer to the occasion.
Despite a smaller crowd, the passionate atmosphere at Old Trafford reflected unwavering support for both teams, highlighting football’s resilient spirit. Manchester United’s victory in the 1991 European Super Cup showcased their enduring legacy and dedication to the sport, solidifying their place in football history through skill, strategy, and unwavering determination.