Wednesday, March 16, 2016

16 March 2002 - The Battle Of Bramall Lane

On 16 March 2002, a match between Sheffield United and West Brom was abandoned after 82 minutes and three red cards.

The ejections started early, as United goalkeeper Simon Tracey received a 9th-minute red card for handling the ball outside the box, forcing United to make an early substitution to bring on their back-up keeper. West Brom capitalized on the man advantage, with forward Scott Dobie scoring in the 18th minute. Captain Derek McInnes doubled the lead in the 63rd minute, then sparks started to fly.

United manager Neil Warnock made a double substitution in the 64th minute, bringing on midfielder Georges Santos and forward Patrick Suffo, but neither remained on the pitch for long. Santos received his red card in the 65th minute for a violent two-footed tackle on West Brom's Andy Johnson. One minute later, Suffo received his marching orders for headbutting McInnes.

After another goal from Dobie (77'), United lost two more players to injury. Having already made all three substitutions and lost three players, they were down to six men, leading referee Eddie Wolstenholme to abandon the match in the 83rd minute.

West Brom manager Gary Megsom refused to participate in a replay, but it turned out to be unnecessary, as the FA allowed the 0-3 result to stand.


  1. Santos and Suffo must hold the record for the quickest sending-offs for substitute players - Santos lasted just 1 minute, while Suffo managed 2 minutes before being red-carded.

  2. Back in 1989, Barnsley sub Ian Banks got a red card before he even got onto the pitch. Hard to top that. : )