5 Greatest Man Utd/Liverpool Encounters

Posted: March 21, 2010 in Uncategorized

It’s an emotionally charged local derby that never fails to produce heart-stopping moments, intense face offs and the sort of challenges that are worthy of a GBH charge. Manchester United vs Liverpool is always the perfect advertisement for this league.

Here are my top five matches in recent years.

5. Liverpool 0-1 Man Utd (2007)

John O’Shea – Goal Machine

 For a game that didn’t produce it’s only goal until the last few minutes, this game was packed with emotional, full-throttle action this fixture is notorious for. United severely rode their luck for large portions of the match, with Edwin Van Der Sar producing an array of fine saves to keep Liverpool at bay. Rafa’s men pressed on, and United’s chances of taking something from the match took another hit when Paul Scholes saw red for aiming a punch (an embarrassingly weak one that did his reputation as a hard man no good at all) at Xabi Alonso.

The game looked to be heading towards a stalemate when unlikely hero John O’Shea popped up to slam an injury time winner into the roof of the net. Edwin Van der Sar and Gary Neville serenaded the United contingent in the corner of Anfield, as O’Shea ran about wildly, seemingly unsure of how to celebrate. Weeks after his heroics as an emergency keeper against Spurs, the Irishman once again sent United fans into a state of euphoria.

4. Liverpool 2-2 Manchester United

Breaking News – Paul Ince is Judas

1998/99 will always be remembered as United’s season. Liverpool were simply a sideshow in a compelling title race between United and Arsenal (and to a lesser degree, Chelsea). Gérard Houllier’s Liverpool would eventually finish in a disappointing 7th, but had the opportunity here to put a sizeable dent in United title ambitions, a consolation prize to get the fans salivating. Dwight Yorke continued his irresistible form that season to put United ahead, before Denis Irwin converted a penalty in his usual cool fashion after an hour to seemingly put the game to bed.

Paul Ince

Ince races off to the Kop

United slacked, and were punished soon after. Jamie Redknapp slammed home a penalty and Paul Ince, doing nothing to dismiss his Judas status West Ham fans fondly bestowed on him, blasted in a last minute equaliser, celebrating wildly in front of the Kop. Liverpool had managed to wipe the smiles off United faces. They soon reappeared.

3.  Manchester United 2-2 Liverpool

The Return Of The King

 It’s rare that a particular individual overshadows this colossal fixture. But if anyone was going to do it, it would be Eric Cantona. Four months prior to this game, The King was banned by the FA following his karate kick on Crystal Palace fan Matthew Simmons (who is reportedly still hiding under his bed to this day.)

Eric Cantona

Cantona's return could be found everywhere, even billboards.

On his much hyped return, it would be silly betting against him making an impact. Cantona set up Nicky Butt’s opener before slotting home a penalty himself. To Liverpool’s credit they pulled the game back, with a sumptuous lob from Robbie Fowler the pick of the bunch. But this was destined to be Eric Cantona’s day. 

2. Liverpool 3-3 Manchester United

New World Order

After 24 minutes of the highest scoring battle between these two sides in the 90’s, the gap in quality between Alex Ferguson’s rejuvenated United and Liverpool was exposed in vivid fashion. Quick goals from Ryan Giggs, Steve Bruce and Denis Irwin put United ahead in front of a traumatized Anfield during this game in the 1993/94 season. Utter humiliation overwhelmed Liverpool, as the contrast in ability and desire between the two sides was spelt out for all to see. Two goals from Nigel Clough restored some hope in Scouse hearts, before Neil Ruddock completed a fantastic comeback for Graeme Souness’ Red’s, blowing the roof off Anfield.

Nigel Clough

Nigel Clough slams one home to reinvigorate Liverpool

Despite hauling a point out of the game, a new precedent had been set for the decade. Sir Alex Ferguson’s Manchester United had arrived.

 1. Manchester United 2-1 Liverpool

“This Is Liverpool’s Day”…”

I know, I’ve mentioned this game earlier on in my blogging days, but if we are talking about epic encounters between these old foes, it would be criminal to leave this one out. In a fiery F.A Cup encounter, Micky Owen put Liverpool ahead after just three minutes. United would press and press for the rest of the match, with Roy Keane turning in a master class performance from midfield, nearly scoring on two occasions. After one particular tantalisingly close effort, Andy Gray would then utter the immortal words, “I told you, this is Liverpool’s day!”

Right up there with Alan Hansen’s epic fail of “You’ll win nothing with kids.” United would eventually break down Liverpool’s resilient defence. Andy Cole combined with Dwight Yorke to poke in an equaliser, before Solskjaer evaded Liverpool defenders to slide in a dramatic winner in injury time (when else?) to send their bitter rivals crashing out as Old Trafford exploded. Nothing beats a last minute winner. Ask John O’Shea.

Any other suggestions? Leave a comment.

  1. I can’t believe you didn’t think this worthy of inclusion:

  2. tonymogan says:

    I have no recollection of such a game ever happening.

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