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The Manchester Derby: Top Five United Moments

As another Manchester derby looms large, and with Manchester City looking like they have run away with the title, it is fitting to look back and reminisce on Manchester United’s top five derby day moments.

5 – Scotty Strikes

The sweetest moment United have had in recent history – by far.

The Red Devils were looking to complete the double over their noisy neighbours in March of last year and did it in style.

A neat free-kick from Bruno Fernandes led to Anthony Martial volleying home to send United into the break with a one-goal advantage.

A nervy second-half eventually ended in sheer delight for United when Scott McTominay capitalised on an Ederson mistake before lifting the ball into an empty goal from long range.

What makes this one so bittersweet to reflect on, is that is was one of the last games played at Old Trafford with fans inside the stadium.

No doubt the energy and intensity of the supporters have been sorely missed ever since.

4 – Reliant Robin

What a moment.

In a highly-anticipated top-of-the-table derby clash at the Etihad Stadium, United reigned supreme.

Argentine full-back Pablo Zabaleta looked certain to have rescued a point for City after his and Yaya Toure’s strikes cancelled out a Wayne Rooney brace.

But in the 92nd minute of the game, Robin van Persie hit a free-kick that sent the red half of Manchester into a state of ecstasy.

Ugly scenes quickly unfolded when Rio Ferdinand was cut by a coin and United players were greeted by an aggrieved City fan amidst their celebrations.

But these incidents didn’t detract from the fact United had just supplied one of the greatest ever derby day moments.

The goal sent United six points clear of their rivals and ensured that, once again, Manchester was red.

3 – One Kiss

Pucker up! Coming in at number three is an iconic moment that created one of the best footballing images ever taken.

A scrappy affair at Eastlands looked destined for a goalless draw. That was until Paul Scholes popped up during stoppage time to fire a header into Shay Given’s bottom left corner.

The Red Devils were overwhelmed with excitement, Gary Neville more than most, which led to a moment of intense passion as he grabbed Scholes and planted a smacker right on the ginger magician’s lips.

The win kept United’s title chances alive, so the kiss was more than justified.

2 – Fergie Time

One of the most frantic games of the Premier League era.

In a game that Sir Alex Ferguson called, “The best derby game of all time”, United found themselves heading into the second-half of injury-time winning 3-2.

But remember, this is United we’re talking about. A terrible attempted chipped pass by Ferdinand allowed Craig Bellamy to run clear to slot past a helpless Ben Foster in goal – 3-3.

But this game had a really special energy about it, and the Red Devils kept persevering.

Their persistence dramatically paid off in the 96th minute when Ryan Giggs played an ice-cool ball into the path of ex-Liverpool forward Michael Owen who, in typical Owen fashion, buried it.

Scenes of absolute pandemonium followed. Gary Neville dancing up the touchline, Mark Hughes infuriated in the technical area and an extremely giddy Ferguson.

1 – Wayne’s World

Following goals from Luis Nani and David Silva the game appeared to be drifting towards a 1-1 draw.

But a moment of absolute genius in the 78th-minute by Wayne Rooney produced one of the most iconic moments in Premier League history.

There appeared to be no danger when Nani hit a right-footed cross into the box, but Rooney had other ideas.

He unleashed an audacious bicycle kick that arrowed past a defenceless Joe Hart and sent Old Trafford, every fan in their armchairs and football fans alike ballistic.

The greatest goal ever scored in a Manchester derby to date – Rooney’s effort is undoubtedly the top derby moment of all-time.

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