Late in the second half, Kevin Moran of Manchester United was sent off for a professional foul on Peter Reid, who was clean through on goal. He became the first player to be dismissed in an FA Cup Final. TV cameras revealed that he had gone for the ball, and not for Peter Reid in the offending tackle. He was later presented with the winner's medal that had at first been withheld. Had Everton won the match they would have completed an unprecedented Treble of League, FA Cup and European Cup Winners' Cup.
All of Manchester United's players (including the substitute who played) had been capped at full international level, making them the first FA Cup winning team to consist entirely of players who had gained full international recognition.
Everton, the previous year's FA Cup winners, had just won the Cup Winners' Cup as well as the league title, and so would have competed in the 1985–86 European Cup had it not been for the ban. Manchester United had been winners two years earlier, and had just finished in the First Division's top four for the fourth successive season under the management of Ron Atkinson.
Eight of United's starting 11 players had been members of the cup winning side from two years earlier, while Arthur Albiston was the only remaining player from the FA Cup winning side of 1977 still in the team. However, when United next won the trophy five years later, Mark Hughes and Bryan Robson were the only players from the 1985 side to feature in the winning team. Both had gone by the start of the 1995-96 season.
Everton's last remaining player from the game was Neville Southall, who stayed with them until 1998 and helped them win a league title in 1987 and the FA Cup in 1995.