If it continued… (Man City v Man United, FA Cup round 3)

Brooks Peck

The rematch of last season's all Manchester FA Cup semifinal only occurred in the third round this year, but proved to have enough madness to render the rest of the tournament anti-climactic. Paul Scholes came out of his six-month old retirement to resume playing for Man United and despite his best efforts to help Man City come back from an early 3-0 deficit, the early red card for captain Vincent Kompany proved too much to overcome. The match ended in a 3-2 win for Man United and the FA Cup holders out of the competition, leaving us to wonder: "What if it continued?"

97' -- Though he wasn't even on the team sheet, Mario Balotelli equalizes with a cartwheel volley. No one questions it.

101' -- Manchester United release an official statement refuting a future story about how Wayne Rooney put in a transfer request eight seconds ago.

105' -- Wayne Rooney scores, eats badge on his shirt, then coughs it back up. The significance of this is unclear.

109' -- Referee Chris Foy shows unused substitute Chicharito a straight red card for going into a prayer on two knees.

114' -- The match is stopped while a cake is wheeled out to celebrate Owen Hargreaves playing for half an hour without getting hurt.

115' -- Owen Hargreaves is engulfed in flames even though the candle on the cake is not lit. He cannot continue.

117' -- Dimitar Berbatov schedules romantic dinner dates with several female admirers. They are all unaware of this fact.

120' -- Upon remembering that Paul Scholes is 37 years old and not 24, Alex Ferguson regrets his very real pre-match statement of: "It's fantastic that Paul has made this decision. It's always sad to see great players end their careers, but especially so when they do it early."

126' -- Scholes is so unprepared for his rushed comeback that he mistimes a tackle and gets all ball.

131' -- Samir Nasri stops existing. No one notices except Arsenal fans.

135' -- Watching from a executive suite, David Beckham declares that he would also be willing to come back to Man United in their time of midfield need. Ferguson pretends he didn't hear him, while inquiring about Eric Djemba-Djemba's availability.

140' -- The match is abandoned when it is discovered that Chris Foy's referee credentials are just a tattered picture of him standing next to a Pierluigi Collina lookalike with the word "referee" and a check mark written on it.