In our new feature, we look back at a memorable match on this day in history. Next up, is Manchester United’s comprehensive win over Liverpool at Old Trafford in 2008.
Manchester United 3 Liverpool 0
Manchester United outclassed 10-man Liverpool 3-0 at Old Trafford to strengthen their position at the top of the Premier League table.
Wes Brown put United ahead from Wayne Rooney’s cross before Liverpool’s hopes were hit when Javier Mascherano was sent off for dissent before the break.
Pepe Reina made some great saves to keep United at bay but he was at fault when Cristiano Ronaldo headed home United’s second and Nani’s fine finish completed an emphatic win.
The result left United in pole position to retain their title with seven games of the season to go but the main talking point after this match was Mascherano’s dismissal.
The Argentine midfielder, who had been booked early on for a wild challenge on Paul Scholes, foolishly chose to continue an argument that his team-mate Fernando Torres had started with referee Steve Bennett over a series of challenges by United players, leaving the official with no choice but to send the current Barcelona star for an early shower.
Manchester United: Van der Sar, Brown, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Ronaldo, Scholes, Carrick, Anderson, Giggs, Rooney.
Liverpool: Reina, Arbeloa, Carragher, Skrtel, Aurelio, Mascherano, Alonso, Kuyt, Gerrard, Babel, Torres.
What they said
Sir Alex Ferguson insisted the title race is still alive despite seeing his side increase their lead to five points at the top with the win.
“The title race is going right to end of the season because Chelsea and Arsenal are playing well,” he said.
Ferguson was understandably ecstatic with the win over their fierce rivals and believed his side played as well as they have done all season at Old Trafford.
“It was a really good performance – a performance of maturity,” Ferguson added.
“We’ve seen a team mature over the last six months and today they hit their high peak.”
Rafa Benitez gave his support to Mascherano after the midfielder saw red in the game.
“Mascherano was surprised at the decision because he thought he said nothing wrong,” said Benitez.
“Ryan Babel heard everything and told me Mascherano was just asking why Fernando Torres had been booked.
“He reacted like he did because he was surprised – I was telling him calm down. However, he made a mistake though by approaching the referee.”
Benitez did admit that the Argentine midfielder, who was still incensed in the moments after being shown red, had made a mistake in going up to Bennett.
The Spanish manager added: “After the sending-off the game was over.”