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Gift Day’s biggest upsets, including Manchester United losing to Middlesbrough and Arsenal being knocked out by Coventry

BOXING DAY is the traditional time when football fans flock to the field of their favorite team.

But, just because it’s Christmas, there’s no guarantee that Manchester United, Arsenal, and Chelsea will give their supporters the gift of a win.

David Beckham looked stunned as Manchester United suffered a Christmas Day defeat in 2002

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David Beckham looked stunned as Manchester United suffered a Christmas Day defeat in 2002Credit: Getty

In fact, those giants have been humbled over the years during the carnival period.

This is the biggest Gift giving day upheaval in the Premier League era.

Coventry 3-2 Arsenal, 1999

The Gunners lost to Gordon Strachan’s side in the 1999-2000 season.

They saw nothing but Premier League challengers, as the Sky Blues took a 2-0 lead thanks to goals from Gary McAllister and Mustapha Hadji.

Freddie Ljungberg brought Arsenal back from the break, but Robbie Keane extended Coventry’s lead.

A late Davor Suker goal threatened to spoil the party, but Strachan’s team held on to the famous victory.

While the army of coach Arsene Wenger stumbles in the search for Premier League glory.

Robbie Keane scored in the famous 3-2 loss to Arsenal

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Robbie Keane scored in the famous 3-2 loss to ArsenalCredit: Peter Luckhurst
Coventry City fans rejoice as Keane celebrates taking the Sky Blues 3-1

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Coventry City fans rejoice as Keane celebrates taking the Sky Blues 3-1Credit: PA: Press Association

Middlesbrough 3-1 Manchester United, 2002

When the apprentice (Steve McLaren) gets the better of his mentor, Sir Alex Ferguson.

With United having won the title, they are desperate to maintain momentum at the top.

But Boro made a rampant appearance at Riverside Stadium, with Alen Boksic and Szilard Nemeth giving them a 2-0 lead.

Ryan Giggs put United back in the game, but Joseph-Desire Job marked the excellence in a 3-1 win.

The defeat makes the Red Devils 7 points behind Arsenal in the new year, but they will regain the championship.

Allen Boksic's score gives Middlesbrough the lead

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Allen Boksic’s score gives Middlesbrough the leadCredit: Getty
Man Utd's nightmare perfectly captured by Juan Sebastian Veron

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Man Utd’s nightmare perfectly captured by Juan Sebastian VeronCredit: PA: Press Association

Bolton 4-3 Newcastle, 2003

Back in 2003, under the guidance of Alan Shearer, Newcastle United were in the race for a place in the Champions League.

But, if they want to be considered worthy of a place, look no further than a relegation win that has been threatened by Bolton.

In an incredible game, it looked like both defenders ate too much turkey with 3 goals conceded in just the first 10 minutes.

Michael Ricketts scored twice to give his team a 4-1 lead, before Shola Ameobi and Alan Shearer sent the game into a thrilling final.

Michael Ricketts is a hero for Bolton with two goals against Newcastle

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Michael Ricketts is a hero for Bolton with two goals against NewcastleCredit: Getty

Charlton 4-2 Chelsea, 2003

Claudio Ranieri’s The Blues arrive in the Valley with high hopes.

It was the first season under ownership of Roman Abramovich, huge investments have been made, and they are desperate to break the grip of Arsenal and Manchester United at the top of the table.

But a shocking result at Charlton shows that there is still a lot of work to be done.

After John Terry scored to knock off Herman Hreidarsson’s early header, it looked likely Chelsea would assert themselves head-to-head.

However, The Addicks had other ideas – leading 4-1 with goals from Matt Holland, Jonatan Johansson and Jason Euell.

Eidur Gudjohnsen’s consolation came too late to free Chelsea.

Jonatan Johansson celebrates scoring on Gift Day against Chelsea

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Jonatan Johansson celebrates scoring on Gift Day against ChelseaCredit: PA: Press Association
Roman Abramovich looks shocked as his Blues lose to Charlton

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Roman Abramovich looks shocked as his Blues lose to CharltonCredit: Getty

Chelsea 4-4 Aston Villa, 2007

At this point, Chelsea are expected to be title challengers once Avram Grant has stabilized the ship following his departure. Jose Mourinho.

They have welcomed top six Aston Villa to Stamford Bridge, but who are they really expected to beat.

The game was somewhat like a Christmas game – as Villa took a 2-0 lead before being locked in at 2-2.

Brazilian Alex put Chelsea ahead, only for Martin Laursen to react immediately.

When Michael Ballack scored two minutes ago, it looked like the Blues had won.

Alas, Gareth Barry took a late penalty and broke the hearts of the Chelsea fans.

Aston Villa spoils Chelsea's party on Gifts Day 2007

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Aston Villa spoils Chelsea’s party on Gifts Day 2007Credit: Times Newspaper Ltd

Sunderland 1-0 Man City, 2012

As the defending champions, Manchester City once again competes for the top spot with rivals Manchester United.

They will eventually hand out the title to their neighbors, with defeat to sublime Sunderland at the Stadium of Light being one of six they will lose along the way.

Former Manchester City winger Adam Johnson overcame his former team by scoring with a long-range effort past Joe Hart.

City were miserable in front of goal, and couldn’t muster an answer.

Sunderland shocked Manchester City with a goal from former player Adam Johnson in 2012

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Sunderland shocked Manchester City with a goal from former player Adam Johnson in 2012Credit: Action Image – Reuters

Leicester 2-1 Man City, 2018

It was Pep Guardiola’s only setback as Manchester City boss on Gift Day.

The defending champions then lost 3-2 to Crystal Palace a few days earlier, so the marks on the armor were starting to show.

A win was needed to keep up with Liverpool at the summit, and Bernardo Silva delivered them with a flyer.

Marc Albrighton equalized for the home side, before Ricardo Pereira took advantage of Man City’s sloppy defense to score with 10 minutes remaining.

The loss did not harm City in the title race, as they were only one point ahead of the Reds that season.

Ricardo Pereira swipes the ball past Man City's Ederson

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Ricardo Pereira swipes the ball past Man City’s EdersonCredit: Reuters
Leicester stars celebrate famous win over Man City

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Leicester stars celebrate famous win over Man CityCredit: Getty – Contributor

https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/football/17135928/biggest-boxing-day-upsets-man-utd-arsenal/ Gift Day’s biggest upsets, including Manchester United losing to Middlesbrough and Arsenal being knocked out by Coventry

Ashley

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