Leeds United - on this day: Nigel Martyn produces Roma masterclass as Whites fans travel in numbers

It's 21 years to the day that Leeds United left Rome with a 0-0 draw in the UEFA Cup...

By Joe Urquhart
Tuesday, 2nd March 2021, 12:17 pm
Leeds United in action against Roma in the UEFA Cup. Pic: Getty
Leeds United in action against Roma in the UEFA Cup. Pic: Getty

The day

March 2, 2000

The event

Leeds United earn an impressive 0-0 first leg draw with Roma in the UEFA Cup

What happened?

It was a night to remember for Leeds United in the Eternal City against Fabio Cappello's hosts.

The Whites had one of the toughest tasks in Europe as they travelled to face Roma in the fourth round of the UEFA Cup.

David O'Leary's young charges entered one of the most daunting arenas in European football in the Stadio Olimpico but came away unscathed thanks in part to a masterclass from goalkeeper Nigel Martyn.

United - who were backed by an estimated 7,000 supporters in Italy - had been knocked out by their counterparts a year earlier in the same competition.

Erik Bakke saw an early header saved and Harry Kewell flashed two shots past the post before an onslaught on the Leeds goal ensued.

Martyn's performance earned him a 10/10 rating from former Yorkshire Evening Post writer Phil Rostron - who only awarded the mark twice during his tenure - and helped secure a famous result.

"They were always going to put us under pressure. We managed to ride out our luck," Martyn said post-match.

"They've got a lot of quality. They'll have to be watched in the return leg. It's a long way from being done. It might even be harder because they'll look to hit us on the break."

United went on to secure passage into the next round thanks to a 67th minute goal from Kewell at Elland Road just seven days later.