Donate Now

250 Days: Cantona’s Kung Fu and the Making of Manchester United

25th May 2019 · 6:00pm - 8:00pm

In person | Virtual event

 250 Days: Cantona’s Kung Fu and the Making of Manchester United

The final night of this year’s LFFW sees award-winning journalist Daniel Storey discuss his latest book which explores one of the most infamous incidents in Premier League history – that Cantona kung-fu kick. Daniel will be in conversation with United fan Carl Anka in what promises to be an insightful, engrossing and unforgettable end to the Festival.

25th January 1995

A cold winter’s evening. Manchester United away against Crystal Palace at a packed-out Selhurst Park. Eric Cantona, United’s mercurial talisman, has been man-marked closely all game by Richard Shaw and become increasingly frustrated. In the 48th minute, Cantona’s temper boils over and he kicks out at Shaw. The ref shows him a red card. On his way off the pitch, a Palace fan rushes towards the hoardings to hurl abuse. The Frenchman loses it. He launches into the crowd, aiming a kung-fu kick at the fan’s chest. He is forcibly restrained and then taken off down the tunnel. The football world is stunned. Nothing like this has ever happened before.

What followed has entered football folklore: the media furore, the seagulls following the trawler, and the longest domestic ban ever handed to a player; it would end up lasting 250 days. As Manchester United’s campaign stuttered towards a trophy-less conclusion, surrendering the league on the last day of the season and losing the FA Cup final, Cantona withdrew from the public eye. But, behind closed doors, Ferguson was planning the most remarkable of fresh starts for his star player and for a new-look United.

250 Days tells the story in brilliant detail of one of the most turbulent times in United’s recent history. Showing Cantona in a new light, and the genius of Ferguson’s man management and vision in close relief, it is an incredibly entertaining and insightful look at the most controversial episode of the Premier League era.

Daniel Storey (@DanielStorey85) is an English journalist and author. The Deputy Editor of Football365 until October 2018, Storey was named the Football Supporters Federation ‘Football Writer of the Year’ for 2016. He has written for The Independent The Set Pieces, The Daily Mirror, The Guardian, Sky Sports and Vic.

The event will be chaired by Carl Anka (@Ankaman616), a journalist, writer and broadcaster living in London who believes, deep down, everything can be explained using professional wrestling. You can find his musings on the BBC and The Athletic, and sometimes he helps at The Players Tribune too.

This event is in the Main Hall on the ground floor (Ground floor – accessible. Induction loop audio). For accessibility info:


Read more about how we use Cookies in our Privacy Policy.


We need your help!

We host talks, concerts, performances, community and social events. However, we are an independent charity and receive no funding from the government. Everything we do is dependent upon our commercial activity and the generosity of supporters like you.

Donate Now