It was always going to be a closely fought match. Sir Alex Ferguson's men, psyched up and on a buzz after their sensational comeback against Chelsea were favourites going into this Premier League game... one with enough backstory to put most Hollywood thrillers to shame.
The attention, or at least most of it, was definitely on Liverpool's Uruguayan striker Luis Suarez and the home team's French left back Patrice Evra. The two have been at the center of a racism-related storm and controversy ever since the Oct. 15 match-up between these two sides, when Evra accused Suarez of calling him a "negro".
Suarez has since been given an 8-match ban and £40,000 fine, which he has served and paid. However, he has staunchly maintained (as have his club and team mates) that he was unjustly accused and punished.
This match should have been all about revenge. The only question was... for whom?
As it turned out, although a double from Wayne Rooney (47' and 50') was enough to seal a victory for Manchester United, the feud between Suarez and Evra just wouldn't go away.
To begin with the Uruguayan refused to shake hands with Evra as the teams lined up and an angered Evra tried to confront Suarez as the teams walked down the tunnel after a scoreless first half.
Suarez felt he had a case for a penalty late in the first half, when a tackle from Ferdinand brought the striker down. Television replays, though, showed the referee - Phil Dowd - got the decision spot on. Aside from that, chances for Scholes, Glen Johnson and Rafael meant both De Gea and Reina had some work to do.
The second half got off to an explosive start, with Rooney netting twice in three minutes to effectively kill the match. Despite the late introductions of both Andy Carroll and Craig Bellamy (the former of whom, once more, offered precious little) and Suarez's 81' minute consolation, Liverpool were consigned to their sixth defeat of the season.
Manchester United now have 58 points from 25 games and lead Manchester City by 1 point at the top of the table; City are away to Aston Villa on Sunday. United's next game, meanwhile, is the first leg of the Europa Leg, when they travel to take on Ajax Amsterdam.
Liverpool remain in 7th position, with 39 points from 55 games and are beginning to fall dangerously behind Chelsea in the race for the last Champions League position. Their next game is at home to Brighton, in the FA Cup.
Meanwhile, check out photographs of all the action from Old Trafford...