1981/82 - Manchester United | Manchester United News
1981/82 – Manchester United

Bryan Robson signs for Manchester United

The 1981–82 season was Manchester United‘s 79th season in the Football League, and their 7th consecutive season in the top division of English football.

It was their first season under the management of Ron Atkinson, and in early October he brought midfielder Bryan Robson to Old Trafford from his former club West Bromwich Albion for a British record fee of £1.5million. He also signed fellow Albion midfielder Remi Moses for £500,000.

United finished the season third in the league and qualified for the UEFA Cup.

Late in the season came the debut of teenage forward Norman Whiteside, who at just 17 was selected for the Northern Ireland squad at the FIFA World Cup. He also scored for United on the last day of the league season in only his second senior appearance for the club.

First Division

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Date Opponents H / A Result

F – A

Scorers Attendance
29 August 1981 Coventry City A 1 – 2 Macari 19,329
31 August 1981 Nottingham Forest H 0 – 0 51,496
5 September 1981 Ipswich Town H 1 – 2 Stapleton 45,555
12 September 1981 Aston Villa A 1 – 1 Stapleton 37,661
19 September 1981 Swansea City H 1 – 0 Birtles 47,309
22 September 1981 Middlesbrough A 2 – 0 Stapleton, Birtles 19,895
26 September 1981 Arsenal A 0 – 0 39,795
30 September 1981 Leeds United H 1 – 0 Stapleton 47,019
3 October 1981 Wolverhampton Wanderers H 5 – 0 Stapleton, McIlroy (3),Birtles 46,837
10 October 1981 Manchester City A 0 – 0 52,037
17 October 1981 Birmingham City H 1 – 1 Coppell 48,800
21 October 1981 Middlesbrough H 1 – 0 Moses 38,342
24 October 1981 Liverpool A 2 – 1 Moran, Albiston 41,438
31 October 1981 Notts County H 2 – 1 Birtles, Moses 45,928
7 November 1981 Sunderland A 5 – 1 Moran, Robson,Stapleton (2), Birtles 27,070
21 November 1981 Tottenham Hotspur A 1 – 3 Birtles 35,534
28 November 1981 Brighton & Hove Albion H 2 – 0 Birtles, Stapleton 41,911
5 December 1981 Southampton A 2 – 3 Stapleton, Robson 24,404
6 January 1982 Everton H 1 – 1 Stapleton 40,451
23 January 1982 Stoke City A 3 – 0 Coppell, Stapleton (pen.),Birtles 19,793
27 January 1982 West Ham United H 1 – 0 Macari 41,291
30 January 1982 Swansea City A 0 – 2 24,115
6 February 1982 Aston Villa H 4 – 1 Moran (2), Robson,Coppell 43,184
13 February 1982 Wolverhampton Wanderers A 1 – 0 Birtles 22,481
20 February 1982 Arsenal H 0 – 0 43,833
27 February 1982 Manchester City H 1 – 1 Moran 57,830
6 March 1982 Birmingham City A 1 – 0 Birtles 19,637
17 March 1982 Coventry City H 0 – 1 34,499
20 March 1982 Notts County A 3 – 1 Coppell (2), Stapleton 17,048
27 March 1982 Sunderland H 0 – 0 40,776
3 April 1982 Leeds United A 0 – 0 30,953
7 April 1982 Liverpool H 0 – 1 48,371
10 April 1982 Everton A 3 – 3 Coppell (2), Grimes 29,306
12 April 1982 West Bromwich Albion H 1 – 0 Moran 38,717
17 April 1982 Tottenham Hotspur H 2 – 0 Coppell (pen.), McGarvey 50,724
20 April 1982 Ipswich Town A 1 – 2 Gidman 25,744
24 April 1982 Brighton & Hove Albion A 1 – 0 Wilkins 20,750
1 May 1982 Southampton H 1 – 0 McGarvey 40,038
5 May 1982 Nottingham Forest A 1 – 0 Stapleton 18,449
8 May 1982 West Ham United A 1 – 1 Moran 26,337
12 May 1982 West Bromwich Albion A 3 – 0 Robson, Birtles, Coppell 19,707
15 May 1982 Stoke City H 2 – 0 Robson, Whiteside 43,072
Pos Club Pld W D L GF GA GD Pts
2 Ipswich Town 42 26 5 11 75 53 +22 83
3 Manchester United 42 22 12 8 59 29 +30 78
4 Tottenham Hotspur 42 20 11 11 67 48 +19 71

Pld = Matches played; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; GD = Goal difference; Pts = Points

FA Cup

Date Round Opponents H / A Result

F – A

Scorers Attendance
2 January 1982 Round 3 Watford A 0 – 1 26,104

League Cup

Date Round Opponents H / A Result

F – A

Scorers Attendance
7 October 1981 Round 2

First leg

Tottenham Hotspur A 0 – 1 39,333
28 October 1981 Round 2

Second leg

Tottenham Hotspur H 0 – 1 55,890

Squad statistics

Manchester United 1981 squad picture

Pos. Name League FA Cup Milk Cup Total
Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals Apps Goals
GK Gary Bailey 39 0 1 0 2 0 42 0
GK Paddy Roche 3 0 0 0 0 0 3 0
DF Arthur Albiston 42 1 1 0 2 0 45 1
DF Martin Buchan 27 0 1 0 2 0 30 0
DF Mike Duxbury 19(5) 0 0 0 0(1) 0 19(6) 0
DF John Gidman 36(1) 1 1 0 2 0 39(1) 1
DF Gordon McQueen 21 0 0 0 0 0 21 0
DF Kevin Moran 30 7 1 0 2 0 33 7
DF Jimmy Nicholl 0(1) 0 0 0 0 0 0(1) 0
MF Steve Coppell 35(1) 9 0 0 2 0 37(1) 9
MF Alan Davies 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
MF Ashley Grimes 9(1) 1 0 0 0 0 9(1) 1
MF Lou Macari 10(1) 2 0(1) 0 0 0 10(2) 2
MF Sammy McIlroy 12 3 1 0 1 0 14 3
MF Remi Moses 20(1) 2 1 0 1 0 22(1) 2
MF Bryan Robson 32 5 1 0 2 0 35 5
MF Ray Wilkins 42 1 1 0 2 0 45 1
FW Garry Birtles 32(1) 11 1 0 2 0 35(1) 11
FW Scott McGarvey 10(6) 2 0 0 0 0 10(6) 2
FW Frank Stapleton 41 13 1 0 2 0 44 13
FW Norman Whiteside 1(1) 1 0 0 0 0 1(1) 1
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