If the Cricket All-Stars brought the best of cricketers from the 1990s back in action on the cricket pitch, how could football be left behind? It was a moment to savour for football fans as legends of the game came together for a UNICEF Charity Match at Old Trafford in Manchester on Saturday, 14 November.
David Beckham captained the 'Great Britain XI' side, while Luis Figo led the 'Rest of the World XI' side. French great Zinedine Zidane was supposed to captain the 'Rest of the World XI', but he, alongwith compatriot Patrick Vieira, withdrew from the game after the horrific terrorist attacks in Paris last Friday that left at least 129 people dead.
The home side won the game 3-1, courtesy of former England internationals and ex-Manchester United men Paul Scholes and Michael Owen, who scored a brace. Dwight Yorke pulled one back for the away side.
Apart from the goals, it was the presence of former masters of the game like Ronaldinho, Edwin Van der Sar, Ryan Giggs and Cafu that gave the capacity crowd at the Theatre of Dreams an enormous moment to re-live history.
Sir Alex Ferguson, regarded as the greatest-ever football manager, was at his home once again as he took the head coach role for 'Great Britain XI', while Carlo Ancelotti was the manager for the visitors. Legendary players, legendary managers, what was missing? A legendary referee.
Former Italian referee Pierluigi Collina, 55, who won the Best Referee of the Year award from FIFA for six consecutive times, was in the middle of it all.
Beckham's crosses, Scholes' passes, Ronaldinho's dribbling came to the fore once again during the game, and the match gave a lot of food for discussion for those who were able to view it. One of the best moments of the match came when David Beckham made way for his son 16-year-old son Brooklyn Beckham.
Beckham Jr. got the moment to live the dream his dad lived for more than a decade at Manchester United. If that was not all, both the Beckhams played alongside each other as an injury to Sol Campbell in the closing stages, forced Beckham Sr. to take to the field once again.
Moments from the game:
Brooklyn Beckham comes on and plays David Beckham-esque crosses
Paul Scholes turns back the clock with penetrative runs
Ronaldinho brings the magic to bamboozle John Terry