What happened the last time Manchester United and Leeds United visited Aussie shores?

Two global football heavyweights in the form of Manchester United and Leeds United will travel Down Under in July 2019, so what better way to get hyped than by taking a trip down memory lane? 

Manchester United kick off the tour on Saturday, July 13 as they take on Perth Glory at Optus Stadium, before playing Leeds United four days later at the same venue.

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Wele
Danny Welbeck in action for Manchester United.

The last time the Red Devils came to Australia was in 2013. David Moyes led a star-studded lineup, including the likes of Robin van Persie, Rio Ferdinand and Ryan Giggs, in his first and only season at the helm of Manchester United.

The A-League All-Stars, coached by Ange Postecoglou, equalised on 51 minutes thanks to Besart Berisha, before finally falling 5-1 courtesy of goals from Danny Welbeck, Jesse Lingard and van Persie.

FIFA World Cup 2018 Winner, Paul Pogba, anchors the Red Devils’ midfield, and is supported  by defenders and forwards who are famous in their own right.

At the back, David de Gea marshals the goal, while Eric Bailly, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones hold the fort. 

Up front, the Red Devils are stacked with amazing talent. Anthony Martial, Lingard, Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez are but a few names who have lit up the Premier League in recent times.

Manchester UNited
Marouane Fellaini, Ashley Young and Luke Shaw celebrate during United's 2-1 victory over Juventus in the UEFA Champions League.

It should be noted that Manchester United are managed by a certain José Mourinho.

The Portuguese has won two UEFA Champions League titles, one apiece with FC Porto and Inter Milan. 


Mourinho has also won a total of eight league titles in every country he has coached in - Portugal, England, Italy and Spain. 

And with the Red Devils having won the UEFA Champions League - as well as its previous renditions - three times in their history, it’s fair to say this club has a rich history.

Mourinho & Pep
José Mourinho embraces Manchester City's Pep Guardiola ahead of the most recent Manchester Derby.

Throwback: When Leeds last visited Australia

Leeds United, meanwhile, visit Australian shores for the first time since July 2002. 

They take on Manchester United on Wednesday, July 17, 2019 at Optus Stadium. 

At the time, the Whites had just finished fifth in the English Premier League and had Caltex Socceroos stars Harry Kewell and Mark Viduka flying for the club.

The likes of Australians Paul Okon, Jacob Burns and Danny Milosevic were on the club’s books, too.

Mark Viduka
Mark Viduka in action for Leeds United's clash against Colo Colo in Melbourne.

Kewell scored in Leeds’ only game of that tour, his 39th-minute strike sealing a 1-0 victory over Chilean giants, Colo Colo, in front of a loud crowd at Melbourne’s Colonial Stadium - now known as Marvel Stadium.

Australians aside, the all-star cast included former Hyundai A-League player Michael Bridges, as well as internationally familiar names such as Robbie Keane, Jonathan Woodgate and Danny Mills.

Fans may also remember Leeds’ coach at the time, none other than Terry Venables.

The Englishman coached Australia from 1996 to 1997, bringing the national team to within a whisker of the FIFA World Cup 1998 in France. 

Two years later, Leeds would finish 19th in the Premier League, confirming their relegation to the Championship. 

However, despite their 14-year absence from England’s top-flight, there is reason once more for optimism. 

Marcelo Bielsa, a revered Argentinian coach who has influenced Pep Guardiola and Mauricio Pochettino, among others, is at the helm.

Under Bielsa, Leeds are in third on the Championship table, three points off top spot, and one off automatic promotion. 

Bielsa
Leeds United manager, Marcelo Bielsa.

Plus, Bielsa’s side contains a wealth of talent and experience which may just provide the spark and flare all fans crave. 

Kemar Roofe is on fire for the Whites, having bagged seven goals and two assists this season.

Behind him is Pablo Hernández, whose five goals and four assists puts him up there with the league’s best. 

Leeds’ Mateusz Klich has also impressed, the 28-year-old Polish midfielder providing five goals and five assists in 18 appearances this season.

So whether you love your Australian football or prefer things in England, these matches are bound to serve up some high quality action.