Then super-sub and now coach Ole Gunnar Solskjaer scored the second of two
Twenty years later, trailing 1-0 from the quarter-final first leg, against a Barcelona side unbeaten in their previous 30 Champions League home matches, they needed a similar freak outcome to progress to the semis.
And perhaps most importantly, they are led by the one man in world football who is capable of making miracles happen - Lionel Messi.
Solskjaer said on the eve of the clash that he believes in
The best player in the world, in the history of football, produced another decisive, debilitating display, ripping Manchester United’s defence apart to score twice in Barcelona’s 3-0 win, 4-0 on aggregate.
Messi ended a freak 12-match run of Champions League quarter-final games, dating back to 2013, without a goal, driving Barcelona into the semi-finals for the first time since they won the tournament in 2015.
Despite that curious drought, throughout that time he has shone while others around him, from the coach to his team-mates, have not delivered, even if he is willing to shoulder his share of the responsibility.
Last season's quarter-final capitulation at AS Roma - a 3-0 defeat in the Italian capital - which saw Barca spew away their 4-1 first leg victory, plunged the club into a deep depression.
That unmoving gloom weighed heavily on Barcelona, so much so that celebrations of their league and Copa del Rey double felt trite, while mortal enemies Real Madrid swept to a third consecutive Champions League win.
Time heals most wounds and Marc-Andre
The double was a hugely impressive achievement, but Barcelona
Captain Messi laid the
The Argentine star was not at his best in the first leg, struggling after a smash in the face from Chris Smalling which left him bloodied and dazed, but his fingerprints were all over Barcelona's crucial away goal.
Back on home
“Walking to glory,” read a banner hoisted by home fans moments before kick-off.
The team appeared to take it to heart and were shell-shocked in the opening period by a Manchester United side that flew out of the blocks, hitting the crossbar through Marcus Rashford.
Messi’s magical opener out of nothing eased the pressure, with the No 10 capitalising on Ashley Young’s giveaway, nutmegging Fred and then fizzing a perfectly placed effort past David de Gea from the edge of the box.
Messi’s second, under five minutes later, was less stylish, aided by a howler from the Spanish goalkeeper, but he still ripped away into open green space to find room for his low shot.
Barca’s third should have come just before half-time after another heart-stopping Messi
At times it seemed like Messi was deliberately toying with Manchester United. That’s not often how he plays, but after his roughing up at Old Trafford, he wanted to prove a point - and did.
It was another of Messi’s raking balls out to the left that helped create the third for Philippe Coutinho, with Jordi Alba teeing up the Brazilian.
Now that would really be a
You can’t put it past him - and with the Argentine in this untouchable form, Barcelona's eyes are firmly on the prize which really matters to them this season.