If Barnet facing Manchester United in the Carling Cup this week wasn’t a bizarre enough experience for the former, they can also rest assured that one of their own set a new mark at the Theatre Of Dreams. From the Guardian’s Daniel Taylor.
Ross Flitney could be found yesterday trying to clear his name after his 15 minutes – or rather 90 seconds – of fame at Manchester United on Wednesday. The Barnet goalkeeper is to appeal against the red card that sent him to an early bath despite not having a scuff of mud on his knees.
“The night before the game I dreamt that I would get a standing ovation,” the 21-year-old said yesterday. “I even told the lads. But I never imagined I would be clapped off because I had been sent off within 90 seconds. All week I had been living for the occasion. It had been a dream of mine to play at Old Trafford since I was a kid and within two minutes it was snatched away. I’m still speechless about it.”
If it is possible for Flitney to take any positives out of a thoroughly chastening experience, he could try to console himself that United’s supporters will certainly remember him for his solitary contribution: rushing from his goalline to collect an innocuous through ball only for his momentum to take him outside the area.
His red card produced the quickest sending-off in Old Trafford history, but a place in the record books was of little consolation to Flitney as he sat crying in the away dressing room. “I don’t just feel bad for myself, I feel bad for all the boys,” he said. “I was expecting a yellow card and I was so shell-shocked when he got out the red I can’t remember anything from the next minute or so. I just hope I get another chance one day.”
Manchester United icon, Northern Ireland international and onetime European Player Of The Year (1968) George Best is suffering from internal bleeding from a bowel infection. Best, 59, one the most notorious playboys and drinkers of his generation, is supposedly in critical condition, with numerous publications and online outlets already preparing their obituaries.