Derby spirit delights Fergie

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson saluted his team after coming through a pulsating derby with a 3-2 win at neighbours City.

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Roberto Mancini's battling men seemed to have salvaged a point having trailed at half-time to a Wayne Rooney brace, only for Robin van Persie to stroke in a deflected free-kick winner in the dying seconds.

Securing all the spoils to stretch their lead at the top of the Premier League would have been pleasing for United.

But it will have also helped to reduce some of the pain of losing twice to their rivals last season, including the 6-1 demolition at Old Trafford.

"It was a fantastic game and you couldn't take your eyes off it," Ferguson said.

"They hadn't lost in two years at home and both of us are contending at the top of the league. We should have finished it off though."

United were unlucky not to have scored a third, with Ashley Young incorrectly ruled offside when he tapped in after Van Persie had curled a shot against the upright.

Yaya Toure and Pablo Zabaleta were on target to level the scores, before the late drama and the Dutchman's last-gasp strike.

"Instead of it being 3-0 - and it was a perfectly onside goal - they go and score. Up to then we were far better," Ferguson added.

"That's the kind of game it is - it can kick you in the teeth. They deserved to get back in it - they fought like hell and gambled with three strikers.

"We can be proud of the fact that, opposed to last year when we sat off them too much, gave them far too much respect, there was a great team spirit.

"They were determined to win the match. I think in general everyone would recognise that."

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Readers' Comments

I

may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

Mike_Christie
Please Stop Telling Us What To Think

H

ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

TheWhiz
Wenger hails important win

I

s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

redbornandbred
De Gea's Europa League target

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