The Belgian youngster then volleyed in a spectacular winner with 30 minutes left to give United the points.
Here, Sports Mole takes a closer look at the action between the two teams.
On target 2
On target 6
Was the result fair?
Overall, Manchester United's patience paid off despite a spirited display from Sunderland. The champions never looked convincing, but they continued to battle away and did not let conceding an early goal affect them.
The hosts were dominant in the first half thanks to a new-found energy in all areas of the pitch. They chased down every ball and mounted attack after attack with little sign of nerves. However, they struggled to keep this up and Manchester United eventually found their way into match before turning it around. That said, caretaker-manager Kevin Ball is sure to be pleased with what he saw.
Man Utd's performance
The champions were well below par during the opening 45 minutes, as demonstrated by the sloppy goal that they conceded to go behind. They looked vulnerable in defence while lacking any decisiveness in the final third. Things changed after the break though as their stamina and determination allowed them to pin Sunderland back, resulting in two goals. David Moyes is still in the process of shaping the side, but this was another example of United making hard work of it.
Sports Mole's man of the match
Adnan Januzaj: Could it really have been anyone else? The 18-year-old Belgian scored two terrific goals on what was his first Premier League start for the club. Fearless, dynamic and gutsy: this was a brilliant performance from the youngster.
Robin van Persie had the chance to wrap up the win late on for Manchester United when he was played through on goal with just the goalkeeper to beat, but the striker somehow poked the ball wide of the post. A poor miss.
Chris Foy was right to book Januzaj for diving in the first half and did little wrong elsewhere as he kept a lid on what occasionally became a feisty encounter.
Sunderland: The Black Cats return to league action next Saturday when they travel to Swansea City.
Man Utd: The Red Devils continue the defence of their Premier League title next Saturday at home to Southampton.