We’re not being biased - honest. Click here to see United’s finest wins over Liverpool.
6. Liverpool 2-0 Man United (Europa League, 2016)
Undoubtedly, the man known as ‘Sir Alex’ around the world and as ‘Old Baconface’ on Merseyside did much to damage Liverpool’s domestic dominance. Over 25 years, Liverpool’s 18-7 league title advantage has been turned into an 18-20 deficit. Ouch.
Yet a superior continental trophy count supported the claim on Anfield’s banners which read ‘European royalty’ – and this added extra weight to a first-ever European meeting between the two clubs. Liverpool couldn’t lose on their own ‘patch’, and at no point did they look like doing so here.
This game was only kept to 2-0 via some superb David de Gea saves, as Liverpool dominated. Daniel Sturridge scored a penalty and Roberto Firmino added a second, while United barely had a sniff. It left Jurgen Klopp’s side in pole position for a quarter-final spot and Louis van Gaal exposed as a fuming yesterday’s man.
5. Liverpool 3-1 Man United (Premier League, 2001)
Despite Man United’s success around this time, Liverpool had the jinx on them. In our mind’s eye, this was via a loop of Danny Murphy scoring in an endless series of 1-0 wins, but apparently there were some deviations to the Murphy Formula.
The 2000/01 season saw Liverpool win 2-0 at Old Trafford (Steven Gerrard netting a brace), then complete the league double – and a fourth successive win over Man United – with this rousing performance at Anfield.
Michael Owen raced clear to put the home side 1-0 up, then leapt for joy at a time when his hamstrings allowed such a thing; John Arne Riiise rocketed in to make it 2-0. David Beckham reduced the deficit in the second half, but Owen peed on his Predators by scoring just two minutes later. Liverpool ran out deserved victors.
4. Liverpool 2-0 Man United (League Cup Final, 2003)
Hardly a classic encounter – but beating your fierce rivals in a cup final in front of 70,000+ fans has to be considered a decent day’s work. This was actually Man United’s first final since the 1999 Champions League, so Ferguson picked a strong team featuring Roy Keane, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Ryan Giggs, Beckham and Paul Scholes.
Yet it was Liverpool’s homegrown talent that settled it. At the end of an uneventful first half, Gerrard scored with a shot deflected off Beckham, then Owen raced clear to seal the game late on. Fergie chuntered post-game that keeper Jerzy Dudek had won Liverpool the match, but the alarmingly high levels of respect between him and Gerard Houllier held up.
Post-game, Ged the Gent even praised Fergie for congratulating each of Liverpool’s players after the final whistle. Sporting behavior? Down with this sort of thing.
3. Liverpool 3-1 Man United (Premier League, 2011)
Dirk Kuyt became the first Liverpool player since Peter Beardsley to score a hat-trick against United in this eventful match full of wild challenges. Jamie Carragher had a hack at Nani, while Rafael went in on Lucas in the kind of wild Brazilian-on-Brazilian action fans love.
Yet while the ever-willing Kuyt got the goals, it was the performance of his strike partner Luis Suarez which opened eyes and slackened jaws. The £23m Uruguayan was a menace throughout, the highlight being a slalom run through a trio of United defenders before he set up Kuyt for the opener.
Gains bonus nostalgia points for the presence of Kenny Dalglish in the dugout (although the debut of new £50m signing Andy Carroll from the bench late in the game was a sign that not everything was heading in the right direction).
2. Man United 0-3 Liverpool (Premier League, 2014)
Perfect timing. David Moyes, already respected by the blue half of Liverpool, was clearly determined to become loved city-wide thanks to the craptacular job he was doing in his first season at Manchester United. Brendan Rodgers, meanwhile, had hit upon the arch tactical strategy of just playing Luis Suarez. Brendan you genius.
Liverpool ran riot in this match – gaining three penalties (Gerrard scored two and missed one) as United’s defenders simply couldn’t cope with Liverpool’s swarming attacking play. By the time Suarez made it 3-0, United were down to 10 men thanks to Nemanja Vidic’s red card, and ran utterly ragged. Moyes was gone the following month.
1. Man United 1-4 Liverpool (Premier League, 2009)
What made this Old Trafford trouncing so sweet for Liverpool was that this was no iffy, injury-hit United side. Cristiano Ronaldo, Wayne Rooney, Carlos Tevez started in attack, while Rio Ferdinand, Patrice Evra and Vidic were all present in defence.
Unfortunately for the home side, Vidic had a serious allergy to Fernando Torres – then at the peak of his powers – while Rafa Benitez had suddenly hit upon a perfect tactical set-up, with Gerrard played just behind the Spaniard.
Ronaldo actually opened the scoring with a penalty, but after that it was all Liverpool. Torres equalised and ran riot, Vidic was sent off in the second half, while Andrea Dossena’s lob over Edwin van der Sar to make it 4-1 ensured his cult hero status.
Of course, the bittersweet coda to this display was that Liverpool couldn’t quite chase down Man United for the title. Federico Macheda found his shooting boots for what turned out to be the only time in his career to help United overcome a dodgy April, as they edged out the Anfield side by four points. But what a match this was.
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Alex Reid is a freelance journalist and the former digital features editor at FourFourTwo. He has also written for the Guardian, talkSPORT, Boxing News and Sport magazine. Like most Londoners, he is a lifelong supporter of Aberdeen FC. He is deceptively bad in the air for a big man. He has never been a cage fighter.