On this Day in 1980: Hajduk Hammers Manchester United 6-0!

Daniela Rogulj

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HNK Hajduk

Taking a walk down memory lane to one of Manchester United’s biggest defeats outside of England…which happened in Split!

On today’s date, exactly 38 years ago, Hajduk and Manchester United met in front of 30,000 spectators at Poljud. Though it was just a friendly match, Hajduk hammered the English club 6-0 – a defeat that was remembered as the worst of the celebrated team outside of England, reports Dalmatinski Portal on January 27, 2018. 

The match was played in the preparation of the Champions League quarterfinals where Hajduk would face against HSV a month later. Then coach Tomislav Ivić sought strong opponents to help the team practice, and the administration of the club agreed that during that period, Hajduk would play against Dinamo (home and away), followed by Bordeaux, Bayern, and Anderlecht.

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The first, however, would be Manchester United – who ultimately ended up with a beating by the Split team. United had a lot of problems with Zlatko Vujović who secured two penalties for Hajduk that Boro Primorac scored in the 22nd and 58th minutes. Krstičević scored in the 33rd, Mujinić in the 40th, Zlatko himself claimed a goal in the 57th, and Bogdanović ended the story in the 81st minute.

“Honestly, we were only thinking about HSV at the time – the friendly match against Manchester was preparing us for the quarter-finals of the Champions League. The legendary coach Tomislav Ivić had a great team, the so-called ‘golden generation’ was still active including Šurjak, Mužinić, Rožić, Luketin, Djordjevic … and there was Primorac, a couple younger players like Gudelj, my brother and me,” said Zlatko Vujović to 24 Sata on January 27, 2015. 

In March for the quarterfinal match, as is already known, Hajduk was unfortunately eliminated by HSV. The German club did not become the European champions this season, though, as they were beaten by Nottingham Forest 1:0 in the final. Now, in the England Championship, that same Forest club ended the season in fifth place, while Manchester United was the second, vice-champion. That should give you a bit of insight into just how strong the United team was Hajduk defeated. With a grin on his face, coach Ivić congratulated every single player on the pitch after the game. 



HAJDUK: Budinčević, Primorac, Krstičević, Luketin, Zoran Vujović, Rožić, Zlatko Vujović (Mamić), Mužinić, Cukrov, Đorđević (Bogdanović), Šurjak (Maričić)

MANCHESTER UNITED: Bailey, Nicholl, Houston (Jovanović), MC Illroy, Mc Gueen, Buchan, Coppel, Wilkins, Jordan, Maccari, Thomas (Grimes).


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