5 times Liverpool destroyed Manchester United in the Premier League era
The rivalry between Manchester United and Liverpool is one of the most storied and bitter in all of English football, and regardless of the fortunes of either side, it still remains one of the biggest fixtures in the country when it comes around, be it in the league or one of the cup competitions.
Recent years have certainly been kinder to United – since the inauguration of the Premier League in 1992/93, the Red Devils have lifted the league title thirteen times, while Liverpool have never won the trophy. But that doesn’t mean that the rivalry has been all one-way traffic. Despite never winning the Premier League, Liverpool have certainly destroyed their biggest rivals on a number of occasions in the Premier League era, and here are five of them.
#5 Liverpool 2-0 Manchester United – 31st March 2001
2000/01 was one of the most successful Premier League seasons for Manchester United – they won the league title at a canter, finishing ten points ahead of runners-up Arsenal and eleven in front of Liverpool, who finished in third place. The likes of Teddy Sheringham, David Beckham and Paul Scholes were arguably at their absolute peak at that point – but their bitter Liverpudlian rivals had the last laugh over them, completing a league double over them.
Their win at Old Trafford came in December 2000 via a lone goal from Danny Murphy, but their second victory – at Anfield, thanks to goals from Steven Gerrard and Robbie Fowler – was far more impressive. Admittedly, United were without a trio of key players in Scholes, Andy Cole and Jaap Stam, but Liverpool also rested their best striker in Michael Owen and still dismantled United, giving them essentially no chance of winning the game from the off.
The key to Liverpool’s victory was the young Steven Gerrard, who had only just broken through as a hot prospect but was still able to dominate even Roy Keane in the midfield battles. He scored an incredible long-range drive in the 16th minute to put Liverpool in command of the game and went on to set up Fowler’s goal shortly before half-time – the goal that killed the game. Even the sending-off of Danny Murphy couldn’t turn the tide for United, and Liverpool almost added a late third through Emile Heskey.
It might’ve only been a consolation given United’s dominance in the league, but it proved Gerard Houllier’s Liverpool side weren’t that far behind them.