A to Z Goal of the Day Series: O is for O’Shea




Probably O’Shea’s best season came in 2002/03, where he made a massive 52 appearances, mostly at left-back. This was the season in which he nutmegged Luis Figo, and regularly had the entirety of Old Trafford serenading him with his much-loved chant: ‘When Johnny goes marching down the wing, O’Shea, O’Shea…’ In 2005/06, while Paul Scholes endured a length spell of absence due to an eye problem, Sheasy even deputised successfully in central midfield, where he struck up an unlikely partnership with Ryan Giggs. In the latter part of the decade, there were excellent spells at right-back, particularly in 2008/09, which he finished by starting the Champions League final defeat to Barcelona in Rome. He left United in 2011 after 393 appearances, having played a part in five Premier League wins, also claiming the FA Cup, two League Cups, four Community Shields and the Champions League and FIFA Club World Cup.




O’Shea joined Sunderland upon leaving Old Trafford in 2011, where he played as a strong central defender for many years, and assumed the captaincy. He signed a one-year deal with Reading in 2018, but announced his retirement at the end of that campaign, shortly after his 38th birthday. His international finale for the Republic had taken place a year earlier, in a friendly against the United States, where he made the last of 118 appearances, which places him third on Eire’s all-time appearances list.


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