No 73. – McManamans Man of the Match Display
On 2nd April 1995, Liverpool travelled to Wembley for the 1995 Coca-Cola Cup Final where they faced Bolton Wanderers in front of 75,595 spectators ‘“ The Steve McManaman Final….
It was Liverpools first Wembley appearance since the 1992 Charity Shield. Roy Evans’ team were favourites going into the game and nearly took the lead early on with both Robbie Fowler and Ian Rush going close. Liverpool did open the scoring in the 37th minute, Steve McManaman collected a John Barnes pass and elogently pushed the ball past Alan Stubbs and gliding past full back Scott Green, unleashed a timid shot which somehow managed to creep past Boltons goalkeeper Keith Branagan. Steve produced a memorable man of the match display in Wembley where from kick off he proceeded to terrorise the Bolton defence with his close control, balance and pace.
Stig Bjornebye nearly scored Liverpools second just after 52 minutes but his shot rebounded back off the post. Liverpool made it 2-0 midway through the second half, McManaman cutting in from the left, shrugged off Scott Greens attempted tackle and beat McAtter with ease before curling a low right footed shot beyond Branagan’s left hand. It was a wonderful performance from McManaman. Alan Thompson did score an almost instantaneous reply but Liverpool held on to claim the 1995 Cola Cola Cup. Memories of Ian Rush, captain on the day, lifting the League Cup will be cherished forever. Rush had become the first man ever to collect five winners medals in the competition.
Steve McManamans man of the match display will always be symbolic to Liverpool winning their fifth League Cup. McManaman recieved his medal and man of the match award from Sir Stanley Matthews, who was guest of honour.
David James, John Scales, Phil Babb, Stig Inge BjÃ¸rnebye, Rob Jones, Neil Ruddock, Steve McManaman, Jamie Redknapp, John Barnes, Robbie Fowler, Ian Rush