SIX OF THE BEST: Timely flashback to"genius" George's double hat-trick one man show

George Best's six goal fest

George Best's six goal fest

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How troubled Manchester United's beleaguered boss Jose Mourinho must wish he had 1970-style George Best on his team sheet for tonight's EFL Cup trip to Northampton Town.

Red Devils, suffering hellish form that has seen three defeats on the bounce, would welcome goal-scoring silky skills of arguably greatest player to ever grace the beautiful game.

February FA Cup fifth round fixture 46 years ago witnessed a wounded animal who was dangerous indeed.

El Beatle, as the teen talent was hailed four years earlier when he took Lisbon apart and returned a sombrero-sporting celebrity, was on a mercurial mission.

Banned for a draconian month and fined £100 - princely sum for all but the high life-loving Ulsterman - for kicking a ball out of the Manc derby ref's hand, he was determined to teach footballing establishment a lesson.

Those sweet FA two fingers turned into record-equaling six goals (revisited here) as he ran rampant to help Reds nobble Cobblers 8-2. As the man himself admitted: “I took out my anger on Northampton".

Best nets first with his head ...

Best nets first with his head ...

Hailed one of his top five virtuoso performances by Manchester United's official website, his double hat-trick saw the inspirational Irishman at the peak of his powers, a whirling dash of brilliance on blade-bald bog that was County Ground quagmire.

Match ball was signed by home team including marker Ray Fairfax, who conceded: “He was a genius - closest I got to him was when we shook hands after the final whistle.”

Tonight United could do worse than start similar prodigy Marcus Rashford, who recently beat Besty's half century record as club's youngest Euro goalscorer. Could he also run riot at ominously titled Sixfields Stadium?

...And rounds 'keeper to complete memorable double hat-trick

...And rounds 'keeper to complete memorable double hat-trick