It’s October 6th, 2001. We’re at Old Trafford in Manchester, England. Greece leads the Three Lions two-to-one in the 93rd minute, and has the opportunity to keep England from qualifying for the 2002 World Cup.
With David Beckham lining up for a free kick, the English National Team is looking for a miracle in the closing seconds. Make it and Beckham becomes a national hero just four years after effigies of the captain burned in the streets of England following the 1998 World Cup. Miss it and the British get to add a new chapter to their history of national team disappointment.
But how’d we get here? How’d England put themselves in position for possibly yet another heartbreak on a national level? How has a Greek team with nothing to play for nearly pulled this off? Before we get to a moment that will define English football - either through success or failure - we need to rewind.