- 2000–01 in English football
The 2000-01 season was the 121st season of competitive football in
Manchester United secured their 3rd Premiership title in succession and their 7th title in just nine seasons. Liverpool became only the second English side to win the League Cup and
FA Cupin the same season and added the UEFA Cupto make it a unique 'treble'.
Fulham reached the Premiership as Division One champions to secure their five-season rise from Division Three. They also became the first club to have played in all four divisions of the English league since the creation of the Premiership.
Arguably two of the most famous clubs outside the Premiership fell into Division Three. They were Luton Town - who had been League Cup winners 13 years earlier and top division members until 9 years ago - and Oxford United - who had been League Cup winners 15 years earlier and top division members until 13 years ago.
Mid-table Division Two side Wycombe Wanderers beat all odds by reaching the FA Cup Semi-Final versus Liverpool, having beaten Division One sides Millwall, Wolves, Wimbledon and a very strong Premiership Leicester City en route. Wycombe were beaten 2-1 at Villa Park,
Keith Ryanscoring the Chairboys' goal.
George Burleyguided newly promoted Ipswich Town to fifth place in the Premiership and achieved qualification for the UEFA Cup. Gerard Houllierwon a treble of trophies with Liverpool after they triumphed in the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup. Sir Alex Fergusonbecame the first manager in English football to win three successive league titles after Manchester United (only the fourth team in history to win three straight titles) topped the Premiership's final table for the third year in a row. Alan Curbishleyconsolidated newly-promoted Charlton Athletic in the Premiership with a ninth-place finish - their highest standing for nearly 50 years. Jean Tiganawon the Division One title with Fulham to gain promotion to the Premiership and end their 33-year exile from the top flight of English football. Mark McGheeenjoyed success in his first season as Millwall manager by guiding them to the Division Two title. Ronnie Mooresurprised all the observers by winning a second successive promotion with Rotherham United, who were this time elevated into Division One. Ray Graydonwon his second promotion in three years with Walsall, who triumphed in the Division Two playoffs. Micky Adamsgave Brighton their most successful season for years as they ended the campaign as Division Three champions. Brian Talbottook Rushden & Diamonds (founded just 9 years ago) into the Football League as Conference champions.
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink, Chelsea's record signing at £15million, topped the Premiership goalscoring charts with 23 goals. Marcus Stewartwas the Premiership's second-highest goalscorer with 19 goals for newly promoted Ipswich Town, who qualified for the UEFA Cup. Teddy Sheringham, 35, was voted Player of the Year by both the PFA and FWA after helping Manchester United win their third successive Premiership title. Michael Owenhelped Liverpool end their six-year trophy drought after his prolific goalscoring helped them win a treble of the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Cup. Steven Gerrardwas voted PFA Young Player of the Year as well as winning three major trophies in a single season with Liverpool.
Young French striker
Louis Sahawas arguably the hottest prospect outside the Premiership after his goals helped Fulham win the Division One title to end their 33-year exile from the top flight.
Mark Hughes, 37, helped Blackburn Rovers return to the Premiership two years after they went down. Jamie Curetonwas Division Two's top goalscorer with 27 strikes for Reading. Bobby Zamoraestablished himself as one of the Football League's top marksmen after helping Brighton & Hove Albion win the Division Three title. Jermain Defoe, aged 19 and on loan to Bournemouth from West Ham United, scored in 10 successive Division Two games while on loan at the Dean Court side.
wede Eriksson is England's first foreign coach
With pressure building up on him following England's dismal Euro 2000 campaign,
Kevin Keeganresigned as manager of England's national team minutes after a 1-0 defeat to Germany in the opening World Cup qualifying game. The match, played October 7, 2000, was also the last played at Wembley Stadium. Howard Wilkinsonand Peter Taylor each had one-match stints as caretaker manager before Sven-Göran Erikssonaccepted the F.A's offer to become the new national coach. Former Lazio coach Eriksson, 52, was the first foreigner to be appointed coach of the England national team. His first match in charge was a 3-0 win over Spain on February 28. England would go on to win their first five matches with Eriksson in charge and all the critics who were opposed to Eriksson being appointed looked to have made a major misjudgement.
Houllier delivers three for Liverpool
Liverpool captured the 2001
UEFA Cupon 16th May with a 5-4 win over Alavés. The game was won in the 116th minute by golden goal, and it completed a triplet of trophies for Liverpool which ended their six-year trophy drought as well as delivering their first trophies under Houllier's management. The League Cup had already been won with a penalty shoot-out triumph over Birmingham City in the first English final at the Millennium Stadium, and the FA Cupwas secured after a dramatic 2-1 win over Arsenal in which Michael Owenscored two late goals after Freddie Ljungberghad put Arsenal ahead.
ir Alex makes history with United
Alex Fergusonbecame the first manager in English football to win three successive league titles after Manchester United were crowned Premiership champions for the third season running. Their title was secured with 80 points and a 10-point gap between themselves and runners-up Arsenal. Most bookmakers had closed their books before the turn of the New Year and admitted that United were certain of their seventh Premiership title in nine seasons. A 6-1 demolition of Arsenal in late February crushed any lingering doubts over the title's destiny.
Fulham back in the big time
Fulham won the Division One title to end their 33-year absence from the top flight. The key men in this success were money-spinning chairman Mohamed al Fayed, enthusiastic manager
Jean Tiganaand free scoring striker Louis Saha.
Fulham's return to the top flight of English football came four years after they had won promotion from Division Three and been taken over by al Fayed in a £30million deal. With his target of Premiership football finally achieved, al Fayed was now determined to turn Fulham into the 'Manchester United of the South'.
Burley clinches Manager of the Year award
Despite Sir Alex Ferguson won a third successive Premiership title with Manchester United and Gerard Houllier's success in cup competitions, Ipswich Town's
George Burleyreceived the Manager of the Year award.
Burley, 45, had been at
Portman Roadsince December 1994, when he took over from John Lyallat an Ipswich side rooted to the foot of the Premiership. He was unable to save them from the drop but quickly put together a new team in hope of getting Ipswich back in the elite of English football. They endured three successive playoff failures before winning the Division One playoff final in 2000 and ending a five-year exile from the Premiership.
Most people had tipped Ipswich to go straight back down in 2000-01, but they spent most of the season in the top five and finished fifth to claim a
UEFA Cupplace - their first foray in Europe for 20 years.
United's record breaking summer
After the end of the 2000-01 season, Sir Alex Ferguson began a summer of heavy spending. Before the season was over he had agreed an English record fee of £19million with
PSV Eindhovenfor Ruud van Nistelrooy, the 25-year-old Dutch striker who had agreed to sign for United a year earlier, but his original move was scrapped after he suffered a serious knee injury. Then, on 12th July, Sir Alex broke the English transfer fee record again. This time he brought in Argentine midfielder Juan Sebastián Verón, 26, from Lazio in a £28.1million deal.
Basement battle for survival
At the bottom of
The Football League, the battle for survival went to the very last day of the season, with the bottom two sides Torquay United and Barnet playing each other at Barnet's Underhill Ground. Both teams knew that if they lost they would be relegated to the Conference. Torquay were 3-0 up at half-time, but Barnet, playing 5 up front for periods of the second half scored twice to keep the tension levels high until the end of the game. It finished 3-2 to Torquay and Barnet lost their league place.
Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink(Chelsea), 23 Football League First Division
Under the management of
Jean Tigana, and with several big-money signings, Fulham won the division easily. Blackburn managed to edge close rivals Bolton to the automatic promotion spot; their rivalry would continue the following season though, as Bolton beat Preston (another set of close rivals) in the playoffs.
Tranmere's recent cup successes failed to translate into league form, and they finished bottom, just behind Queens Park Rangers, who fell into the third tier for the first time in nearly four decades. An unlikely series of results in the final few weeks sent Huddersfield down to Division Two, when they had looked safe at the start of April.
Louis Saha(Fulham), 27
"See also: Play-off results"
Football League Second Division
Millwall, who had failed to impress since relegation from the First Division in 1996, finally secured promotion as divisional champions. Making perhaps bigger headlines were unfashionable Rotherham, who instead of struggling as the pundits predicted, took the second automatic promotion spot, pushing Millwall perilously close for the title. Walsall recovered from the previous year's last-day relegation and won the playoffs.
Oxford finished bottom of the table by some distance, never looking as if they would survive and setting a number of unwanted records for the division. Swansea - who had beaten Rotherham to the Division Three title the previous season - proved almost as bad as Oxford, with their survival hopes being little better. Much was expected of Luton following massive pre-season overhauls both and off the pitch; unfortunately their season ended in crushing disappointment, and relegation. Bristol Rovers occupied the final relegation spot, entering the League's bottom tier for the first time in their history.
P W D L F A GD Pts 1 Millwall 46 28 9 9 89 38 +51 93 2 Rotherham United 46 27 10 9 79 55 +24 91 3 Reading 46 25 11 10 86 52 +34 86 4 Walsall 46 23 12 11 79 50 +29 81 5 Stoke City 46 21 14 11 74 49 +25 77 6 Wigan Athletic 46 19 18 9 53 42 +11 75 7 AFC Bournemouth 46 20 13 13 79 55 +22 73 8 Notts County 46 19 12 15 62 66 -4 69 9 Bristol City 46 18 14 14 70 56 +14 68 10 Wrexham 46 17 12 17 65 71 -6 63 11 Port Vale 46 16 14 16 55 49 +6 62 12 Peterborough United 46 15 14 17 61 66 -5 59 13 Wycombe Wanderers 46 15 14 17 46 53 -7 59 14 Brentford 46 14 17 15 56 70 -14 59 15 Oldham Athletic 46 15 13 18 53 65 -12 58 16 Bury 46 16 10 20 45 59 -14 58 17 Colchester United 46 15 12 19 55 59 -4 57 18 Northampton Town 46 15 12 19 46 59 -13 57 19 Cambridge United 46 14 11 21 61 77 -16 53 20 Swindon Town 46 13 13 20 47 65 -18 52 21 Bristol Rovers 46 12 15 19 53 57 -4 51 22 Luton Town 46 9 13 24 52 80 -28 40 23 Swansea City 46 8 13 25 47 73 -26 37 24 Oxford United 46 7 6 33 53 100 -47 27
Jamie Cureton(Reading), 27 Football League Third Division
After their financial nightmares and near-relegations of the previous years, Brighton finally started making serious progress, as they won the title. Chesterfield would have taken the runners-up spot; however, financial irregularities resulted in a 9 point deduction, handing their spot to Cardiff instead, though Chesterfield still took the final automatic promotion spot. Blackpool sneaked into the playoffs near the end of the season, then proceeded to win them, ensuring that their spell in Division Three was a short one.
A number of teams were threatened with relegation during the course of the season. In the end though, Barnet - who moved long-serving manager
John Stillupstairs to make way for the higher-profile appointment of Tony Cotteeearly in the season - suffered a stunning collapse after a bright start, leading to a "winner takes all" match with Torquay on the final day of the season. Torquay won the match and ensured League survival, while Barnet returned to the Conference after a decade.
P W D L F A GD Pts 1 Brighton & Hove Albion 46 28 8 10 73 35 +38 92 2 Cardiff City 46 23 13 10 95 58 +37 82 3 Chesterfield* 46 25 14 7 79 42 +37 80 4 Hartlepool United 46 21 14 11 71 54 +17 77 5 Leyton Orient 46 20 15 11 59 51 +8 75 6 Hull City 46 19 17 10 47 39 +8 74 7 Blackpool 46 22 6 18 74 58 +16 72 8 Rochdale 46 18 17 11 59 48 +11 71 9 Cheltenham Town 46 18 14 14 59 52 +7 68 10 Scunthorpe United 46 18 11 17 62 52 +10 65 11 Southend United 46 15 18 13 55 53 +2 63 12 Plymouth Argyle 46 15 13 18 54 61 -7 58 13 Mansfield Town 46 15 13 18 64 72 -8 58 14 Macclesfield Town 46 14 14 18 51 62 -11 56 15 Shrewsbury Town 46 15 10 21 49 65 -16 55 16 Kidderminster Harriers 46 13 14 19 47 61 -14 53 17 York City 46 13 13 20 42 63 -21 52 18 Lincoln City 46 12 15 19 58 66 -8 51 19 Exeter City 46 12 14 20 40 58 -18 50 20 Darlington 46 12 13 21 44 56 -12 49 21 Torquay United 46 12 13 21 52 77 -25 49 22 Carlisle United 46 11 15 20 42 65 -23 48 23 Hereford United 46 12 11 23 54 68 -14 47 24 Barnet 46 12 9 25 67 81 -14 45
Bobby Zamora(Brighton & Hove Albion), 28
" * = Chesterfield deducted 9 points for financial irregularites.
Diary of the season
3 July 2000: The News of the Worldreports that Kevin Keeganhas resigned as England national coach, but the reports are swiftly denied. Meanwhile, Terry Venables(who was in charge from 1994to 1996) insists that he is not interesting in becoming national coach if Keegan departs.
12 September 2000: Gianluca Vialliis sacked after two-and-a-half years in charge of Chelsea, during which time he won the FA Cup, League Cup, European Cup Winners Cup, Charity Shieldand European Super Cup.
15 September 2000: Chelsea name Italian Claudio Ranierias their new manager.
30 September 2000: Rumours are circulating that Aston Villa are about to buy back Dwight Yorkefrom Manchester United, two years after he left them in a £12.6million deal.
1 October 2000- Leicester City go top of the Premier League at the expense of Manchester United. It is the first time since the 1963-64 season that Leicester have been top of the English league.
7 October 2000: After 77 years, Wembley Stadium closes its doors for the last time in order to allow a complete reconstruction which should be finished in 2003. The final game at the old stadium is England's first qualifying game for the 2002 World Cup. They lost 1-0 to Germany and manager Kevin Keeganresigns after 18 months at the helm.
14 October 2000: Leicester City surrender their lead of the Premier League with a defeat at Manchester United, who take over at the top.
30 October 2000: Lazio's Swedish coach Sven-Göran Erikssonaccepts the Football Association's offer to take charge of the England team from next summer.
23 November 2000: Leeds United break the English transfer fee record by paying £18million for West Ham United centre-back Rio Ferdinand, while Chelsea's £12million sale of Tore Andre Floto Glasgow Rangersbreaks the Scottish record.
1 December 2000: Middlesbrough withdraw an offer to Terry Venables for him to become the club's first-team coach.
6 December 2000: Five days after withdrawing their offer for him to become first-team coach, Middlesbrough unveil Terry Venables as first-team coach to work alongside manager Bryan Robson, who had been his assistant with the England team from 1994to 1996.
22 December 2000: Recent calls for standing accommodation to be relegalised at Premier League grounds are blasted by relatives of some the 96 people killed in the Hillsborough disaster, the 1989tragedy which led to standing accommodation being banned from all top division grounds by 1994.
24 January 2001: Luc Nilisannounces his retirement from playing, four months after suffering a badly broken leg in a Premier Leaguefixture for Aston Villa.
18 December 2000: Dave Bassettresigns as manager of Barnsley, who are battling relegation in Division One just seven months after narrowly missing out on promotion to the Premier League.
21 December 2000- Alan Sugar, chairman of Tottenham Hotspur since 1991, announces his decision to sell the club. Meanwhile, Division One leaders Fulham are rumoured to be making an £8million bid to Barcelona for the former Arsenal midfielder Emmanuel Petit.
9 January 2001: Sven-Göran Erikssonresigns as Lazio manager and frees himself to take charge of the England team six months earlier than planned.
25 February 2001: After a 1-1 draw in open play at the Millennium Stadium, Liverpool become the first English team to win a major trophy on penalties after they achieved a shoot-out victory over Birmingham City in the League Cup final - their sixth success in the competition.
27 February 2001: Stan Cullis, who took charge of the great postwar Wolverhampton Wanderers side that won three league titles and two FA Cups, dies in Worcestershireat the age of 85.
12 May 2001: Liverpool clinch the FA Cup by defeating Arsenal 2-1 thanks to a late double from Michael Owen. It is their sixth FA Cup triumph to date, but their first since 1992.
16 May 2001: Liverpool yield their third trophy of the season by defeating Spanish side Alaves5-4 in the UEFA Cup final. It is the third time they have won the trophy, and the second time they have won three major trophies in one season (the first was in 1984).
19 May 2001: The Premiership season ends with champions Manchester United, runners-up Arsenal and third-placed Liverpool qualifying for the UEFA Champions League, with the UEFA Cup places going to Leeds United, Ipswich Town and Chelsea. The relegated teams are Manchester City, Coventry City and Bradford City.
5 June 2001: Bryan Robsonresigns after seven years as manager of Middlesbrough.
12 June 2001: One week after the resignation of Bryan Robson as manager, Terry Venables steps down as Middlesbrough's first-team coach. The new Middlesbrough manager is Steve McClaren, formerly assistant manager of Manchester United.
18 June 2001: Youth team coach Glenn Roederis named as West Ham United's new manager.
UEFA Champions League
Football Conferenceto Division Three:":Rushden & Diamonds
"From Division Three to The Football Conference:":Barnet
Major Transfer deals
July 3- Robert Pirèsfrom Marseille to Arsenal, £6m
July 3- Carlo Cudicinifrom Castel di Sangroto Chelsea
July 17- Paul Gascoignefrom Middlesbrough to Everton, free
July 18- Nick Barmbyfrom Everton to Liverpool, £6m
July 21- Mark Vidukafrom Celtic to Leeds United, £6m
July 25- Julio Arcafrom Argentinos Juniorsto Sunderland, £3.5m
July 28- Alpay from Fenerbahçe to Aston Villa, £5.6m
August 17- Craig Bellamyfrom Norwich City to Coventry City, £6.5m
August 25- Christian Ziegefrom Middlesbrough to Liverpool, £5.5m
August 26- Sylvain Wiltordfrom Bordeaux to Arsenal, £13m
September 20- Ugo Ehiogufrom Aston Villa to Middlesbrough, £8m
October 26- Rio Ferdinandfrom West Ham United to Leeds United, £18m
December 7- Igor Bišćanfrom Dinamo Zagrebto Liverpool, £5.5m
December 29- Jesper Grønkjærfrom Ajax to Chelsea, £7.8m 2001
January 13- Juan Pablo Ángelfrom River Plate to Aston Villa, £9.5m
January 16- Edu from Corinthians to Arsenal, £6m
May 21- Robbie Keanefrom Inter to Leeds United, £12m
June 14- Frank Lampardfrom West Ham United to Chelsea, £11m
June 17- Corrado Grabbifrom Ternana to Blackburn, £6.75m
* After failing to break into the
Tottenham Hotspurside, Peter Crouch, 19, makes his league debut for new club Queen's Park Rangersin a goalless draw with Birmingham City on the opening day of the season.
* The same weekend sees future England team-mate
Joleon Lescott, play for Wolverhampton Wanderersin their draw with Sheffield Wednesdayshortly before his 18th birthday.
* 17-year old
Jermain Defoescores the only goal of the game as West Ham Unitedwin 1-0 at Walsall in the Football League Cupin August 2000.
Stan Cullis, 85, manager of Wolverhampton Wanderers from 1947 to 1964, having previously been on the club's playing staff. Won three league championships and two FA Cups. Was Birmingham City manager from 1965 until 1970. During the early 1990s redevelopment of the Molineux, a new stand was named in honour of Stan Cullis.
David Rocastle, 33, who won two league championships and one League Cup with Arsenal (where he played from 1983 until 1992), died of cancer. He played 14 times for England without scoring, but was never on the losing side. He later played for Leeds United, Manchester City, Chelsea, Norwich City, Hull City and Malaysian side Selangorbefore retiring in 1999. His nine-year-old son Ryan was Arsenal's mascot at the FA Cup final just six weeks after Rocastle senior's death.
*George Armstrong, 56, died of a stroke at Arsenal's training ground where he had been coaching the club's reserve side. He had been a key player in their 1971 double triumph.
*Maurice Evans, 63, died of a heart attack. He had managed Reading to the Fourth Division championship in 1979 and most famously took charge of Oxford United during their three-year spell in the top flight (1985-88). Guided them to League Cup glory in 1986. Was sacked in March 1988 as they were heading for relegation to the Second Division, but was later employed at the club as caretaker manager (during the autumn of 1993) and then as Director of Football.
Joe Fagan, 80, was a long-serving coach at Liverpool when he succeeded Bob Paisleyas manager in 1983. In his first season they won a unique treble of the league championship, League Cup and European Cup, but his last season ended trophyless after they lost 1-0 to Juventus in the European Cup final at Heysel - the infamous game at which the Heysel Stadium disasterclaimed the lives of 39 spectators.
Cliff Sear, 63, took much of the credit for helping develop the career of Ian Rushfrom his work with the Chester youth set-up in the late 1970s. His 19-year association with Chester (1968-87) also included a spells as manager and player. The former Welsh international had earlier played for Manchester City and later worked for Wrexham.
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