Match Analysis: Liverpool 1-2 Manchester United

Patrice Evra, Raheem Sterling
© PA Photos
Sports Mole looks back on Manchester United's 2-1 victory away at Liverpool this afternoon.

A late penalty from Robin van Persie gave Manchester United all three points against Liverpool on an emotional afternoon at Anfield.

Pre-match both sets of players paid tribute to the 96 Liverpool supporters that lost their lives during the Hillsborough disaster in 1989.

It would be fair to say that Liverpool dominated large parts of the match, but United ultimately won the points.

Here, Sports Mole has analysed the 90 minutes of action on Merseyside.

Match statistics

Liverpool
Shots: 13
On Target: 8
Possession: 53%
Corners: 7
Fouls: 14

Man United
Shots: 8
On Target: 4
Possession: 47%
Corners: 3
Fouls: 7

Was the result fair?

In terms of chances created and possession, no, it wasn't a fair outcome. However, football is all about taking your chances and Liverpool are not doing so at the moment. Visiting United made the most of their opportunities and as a result they leave Anfield with the three points.

Liverpool's performance

As mentioned above they lacked a real cutting edge. Luis Suarez played well, but you never got the impression that he was going to find the net. The Reds dominated for large parts of the encounter, even with ten men, but they failed to turn that into goals.

Man United's performance

United have played better at Anfield and lost, that's for sure. Still, the three points are all that matters and that is what United claimed. At the end of the season it could be lacked back upon as a crucial result.

Referee's performance

Mark Halsey was at the centre of two major decisions today - both of which went against Liverpool. On reflection the sending off of Shelvey looks slightly harsh. He caught Jonny Evans but it looked an honest challenge from both players. A yellow card would probably have been fair. As for the United penalty, Glen Johnson had clipped Antonio Valencia and Halsey had little choice. Suarez also had a penalty shout, but his theatrics cost him dearly.

Sports Mole's man of the match

A few contenders but we're going to plump for Joe Allen. In previous games he has shone with his passing ability. However, following the sending off of Shelvey, Allen and Gerrard were forced to do the work of three men in the Liverpool midfield. He was still calm when on the ball and rarely wasted possession.

Biggest gaffe

This may be a little harsh, but it looks as though Pepe Reina should have saved Van Persie's penalty. The Spanish keeper got both hands to the ball, but failed to keep out an effort that was hardly powerful. Reina looked disappointed with himself afterwards and you can see why.

What's next?

Liverpool: The Reds are now desperate to record their first win of the season. After West Bromwich Albion away in the League Cup, they travel to Norwich City next Saturday afternoon.

Man United: Another tough game for the Red Devils up next in the form of Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford. Having said that, Spurs have an awful record against United in recent seasons.

Robin Van Persie
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Result: Liverpool 1-2 Manchester United
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Chelsea21171345153052
2Tottenham HotspurSpurs21136243142945
3Liverpool21136249242545
4Arsenal21135348222644
5Manchester CityMan City21133541261542
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd21117332201240
7Everton219663223933
8West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom218582828029
9Stoke CityStoke217682733-627
10Burnley2182112331-826
11Bournemouth2174103037-725
12West Ham UnitedWest Ham2174102635-925
13Southampton216691926-724
14Watford2165102336-1323
15Leicester CityLeicester2156102434-1021
16Middlesbrough214891722-520
17Crystal Palace2144133040-1016
18Hull City2144132045-2516
19Sunderland2143142040-2015
20Swansea CitySwansea2143142349-2615