Van Nistelrooy’s delayed move to Old Trafford finally happened in 2001 and, after scoring on his debut against Liverpool in the Charity Shield, he never looked back, scoring 23 goals in 32 Premier League matches in his first season, including finding the net in eight successive matches.

In the following campaign, 2002/03, he pipped Arsenal’s Thierry to the Golden Boot as United won the title, and was also prolific in the Champions League.