On this day, May 4, 2003 - Manchester United win eighth title under Alex Ferguson

Challengers Arsenal lose at home to Leeds and hand the trophy to Fergie

LIVERPOOL - MAY 11:  Manchester United players celebrate with the trophy after the FA Barclaycard Premiership match between Everton and Manchester United held on May 11, 2003 at Goodison Park, in Liverpool, England. Manchester United won the match 2-1. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
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Manchester United were famed for many things under the leadership of Sir Alex Ferguson; style, resilience and the determination to never give up.

It was those qualities that secured United an eighth title in 11 years for Ferguson and his stars on May 4, 2003 after nearest challengers Arsenal lost 3-2 at home to Leeds.

Fergie's men had been eight points behind champions Arsenal at one stage but bounced back from consecutive defeats against Blackburn and Middlesbrough either side of Christmas Day to remain unbeaten in the league for the remainder of the campaign.

Arsene Wenger's side were unbeaten in the league until mid-October when a 16-year-old Wayne Rooney netted his first league goal in the last minute at Goodison Park to hand Everton victory.

Arsenal paid the price for injuries to the likes of Sol Campbell and Patrick Vieira as they fell behind. They had been two ahead at Bolton the previous weekend but saw three players go off injured and only managed a point.

Pascal Cygan, Freddie Ljungberg and Lauren all suffered injuries against Sam Allardyce's side to join Campbell, Vieira, Edu and Francis Jeffers on the sidelines ahead of the visit of Leeds.

A Ruud van Nistelrooy hat-trick and a David Beckham strike earned United a 4-1 win over Charlton the day before Arsenal welcomed Leeds to Highbury.

The victory sent United eight points clear with a trip to Goodison to complete the campaign but Arsenal now had two games in hand.

Arsenal twice fought back at Highbury thanks to equalisers from Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp but Mark Viduka sealed an away win in the closing stages.

Wenger maintained his side were "certainly the best team in England" after the defeat.

"We have the feeling that in recent weeks things went against us with injuries and suspensions especially," the Frenchman said.

"That can happen to anybody but I still believe we are the best team. I still think we could play the Brazilian national team."

Ferguson vindicated his decision to reverse his retirement during the previous season.

The Scot did not watch the game because he was at his grandson's birthday party but celebrated afterwards.

"We were up against a terrific side but we showed perseverance, determination and a great ability never to give up," he said.

"We had to overcome injuries early in the season but we had to bite the bullet and take the poison."

The result was just as important for Leeds as the victory all but secured their Premier League survival.

Peter Reid had been brought in as caretaker boss after the departure of Terry Venables with the Yorkshire club seven points above the relegation zone with eight games left. Five days after the Arsenal victory, Reid was confirmed as the club's manager, although he was sacked six months later.

Arsenal gained some comfort by beating Southampton 1-0 in the FA Cup final and they regained their title in style the following year as they went the whole league campaign unbeaten.