Liverpool huffed and puffed and sometimes threatened to break the Manchester United house down, but it was Wayne Rooney who had the final say, thumping home a late winner to give his team a vital 1-0 English Premier League win at Anfield on Sunday.
In a match where chances and excitement were at a premium, Rooney popped up with the decisive moment on 78 minutes, hitting the roof of the net from eight yards out to give Manchester United the three points they value the most.
Only one team – Liverpool -- really showed any kind of attacking intent for the majority of this match, and even that intent was not the greatest, which kind of tells you all you need to know really about the quality of the game. While Liverpool vs Arsenal was one of the matches of the English Premier League this season, Liverpool vs Manchester United was the kind that will not stick in the memory, at least not for the right reasons.
Liverpool had the best of the chances and efforts on goal until the Rooney opener, with Adam Lallana, Roberto Firmino, off a rebound of that Lallana effort, James Milner and Jordan Henderson all presented with decent opportunities that none could bury into the back of the net, or indeed trouble David De Gea enough to bring a bead of sweat onto the forehead of the Manchester United goalkeeper.
The away team, who have been criticised for hogging possession too much without much end product, did not even have the bulk of the ball in the first half, with Liverpool definitely the team that looked the more likely to go on and open the scoring.
However, as is so often the case, after all the huffing and puffing from Jurgen Klopp's men, it was Manchester United who broke the dam, and that too off a setpiece.
Manchester United took a quick short corner, allowing Juan Mata to swing in a cross perfectly onto the head of Marouane Fellaini. The Belgian's header struck the crossbar, before falling kindly to Rooney, who thumped home past Simon Mignolet for his first goal at Anfield since 2005.
The Manchester United captain, in the process, also became the holder of the record for scoring the most league goals for a single club, eclipsing Thierry Henry's mark of 175 for Arsenal, with his 176th strike.