Half-Time Report: Birthday boy Daniel Sturridge puts Liverpool ahead

Daniel Sturridge marks his 24th birthday by putting Liverpool 1-0 up against Manchester United in a fiery first half at Anfield.

Daniel Sturridge has made it three goals in three Premier League games this season to put Liverpool ahead against Manchester United at half time.

Daniel Sturridge of Liverpool celebrates scoring the opening goal during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Manchester United at Anfield on September 01, 2013© Getty Images

The Reds were ahead inside four minutes when birthday boy Sturridge, turning 24 today, diverted Daniel Agger's header into the net following Steven Gerrard's corner.

United came back into the match quickly and a well-worked passing move saw Danny Welbeck test Simon Mignolet for the first time with a low shot.

Minutes later they again had a chance when Ashley Young's low corner somehow evaded all at the front post before also bobbling by Robin van Persie at the back post.

United's resurgent spell fizzled out after 20 minutes and it was Liverpool who next threatened when Glen Johnson was brought down outside the area. Gerrard's curling free kick was saved by David de Gea.

The historically fiery nature of the fixture began to resurface towards the end of the half, with three Manchester United players - Tom Cleverley, Michael Carrick and Van Persie - seeing yellow.

Once the half-time whistle had blown, referee Andre Marriner spoke to both captains - Gerrard and Nemanja Vidic - in an effort to calm things down ahead of the second period.

Follow live updates of the second 45 minutes by clicking here.

Liverpool's Raheem Sterling scores the opening goal against Notts County during their League Cup match on August 27, 2013
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