Liverpool have enjoyed some memorable days at Old Trafford. It’s time for another one this Sunday. Here are five of the best.
Manchester United 0 Liverpool 1: December 2000
This was the first sign that Gerard Houllier was turning the Reds into a proper team. United had not lost at home in the Premiership for two years, but that didn’t matter to Liverpool. They created several decent chances and defended with total resolve.
Danny Murphy, United’s bogey man, was the hero with a lovely curling free-kick inside Fabien Barthez’s post just before half-time. Luke Chadwick was sent off to complete Sir Alex Ferguson’s misery
It was the late Houllier’s 100th sole game in charge and a sign of great things to come. What better way to celebrate Christmas than a first league win over the old enemy in a decade. A psychological barrier had been broken.
Manchester United 0 Liverpool 1: January 2002
Liverpool were in a title race with Arsenal and Manchester United but had come off the rails with no win in the previous five games.
Subscribe to Rousing The Kop TV now
They could now approach Old Trafford without fear. It was the same scoreline, the same goalscorer but an even more mature performance.
A 21-year-old Gerrard was highly influential in midfield and it was his pass that picked out Danny Murphy in the 85th minute. The midfielder calmly lobbed the ball over Barthez. The game was still not yet won as Jerzy Dudek pulled off a stunning save from Ryan Giggs at the other end almost immediately. It was Liverpool’s fifth consecutive victory over United and exemplified the rebirth of the club. The Reds were now a team capable of winning trophies.
Manchester United 1 Liverpool 4: March 2009
Many tried to paint Rafa Benitez’s January rant as a sign that he was losing the mind games with Sir Alex Ferguson. The truth was very different. Liverpool finished like an express train with this thrashing of the Red Devils a major catalyst.
Liverpool were in the mood to turn the tide as they had hammered four past Real Madrid in midweek. They started the game seven points behind United who had a game in hand. When Cristiano Ronaldo scored from the penalty spot halfway through the first period, it looked like the title bid was over. However, Fernando Torres was on fire, robbing Nemanja Vidic and stroking a perfect equaliser past Edwin Van der Sar. Steven Gerrard added a penalty just before the break and cheekily kissed the camera.
After the restart, the madness in the home ranks continued as Vidic was sent off for another foul and Fabio Aurelio scored a beauty with the resulting free-kick. Even Andrea Dossena got on the scoresheet with a perfect lob. Liverpool took 31 points from their final 33 and only lost twice that season.
Manchester United 0 Liverpool 3: March 2014
During that storming eleven-game winning streak in the 2013/14 season, the victory in Manchester was probably one of the easiest. David Moyes’ team was incapable of handling Luis Suarez and Daniel Sturridge. The home side conceded three penalties as the SAS ran rampant. Rafael handled inside the box, Joe Allen was tripped and then Vidic was sent off for the fourth time against the Reds. Gerrard converted two spot-kicks but hit the post with the third. It didn’t matter. Suarez rounded off a perfect day with the final goal. He loved a good slide.
Manchester United 1 Liverpool 1: March 2016
Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool had totally dominated the Anfield edition of this two-leg Europa League last 16 tie. When United scored with an Anthony Martial penalty to halve the deficit, it was a huge test for a team still finding its feet under the German.
They responded brilliantly. That midfield maestro, Philippe Coutinho, delivered the killer punch with an exquisite weaving goal that left David de Gea flabbergasted. “Phil had a genius moment”, said Klopp. How Liverpool could do with such genius on Sunday.