#CultClashes: Rooney magic and Goater gold light up Manchester derby


There’s a pretty good reason why the Manchester derby is one of the most eagerly anticipated games in the Premier League.

In fact, there’s more than just one and in this latest edition of our #CultClashes series we’ve attempted to bottle everything that makes games between Manchester United and Manchester City so exciting.

As always we could only pick five of the best Premier League encounters.

But don’t worry. This little lot contains more than enough to whet the appetite.

Manchester City 2-3 Manchester United, Sunday 7 November 1993

Maine Road was already bouncing before kick-off but the Kings of the Kippax sent the home fans into overdrive when taking a 2-0 lead into half-time.

Niall Quinn was the man who did the damage early on, planting a header past Peter Schmeichel after 22 minutes.

That goal meant the gangly Irish striker had scored for the fourth derby in a row and he added to his tally with another headed effort just 10 minutes later.

But this was Alex Ferguson’s United and they weren’t about to give up without a fight.

Eric Cantona took advantage of a defensive lapse to reduce the arrears before netting a dramatic equaliser from a fine Ryan Giggs through ball.

And then the real hero of the hour stepped forward with Roy Keane’s 87th minute winner completing an incredible comeback.

Manchester City 3-1 Manchester United, Saturday 9 November 2002

Haven’t beaten your rivals in 13 years?

Playing your final home derby match before moving to a new stadium?

Some might say the script for this famous City victory was written before the two teams took to the pitch.

Nicolas Anelka’s early goal put the hosts ahead before Ole Gunnar Solskjaer swiftly restored parity.

And it was left to cult hero Shaun Goater to really get the party started, punishing a Gary Neville error to put the hosts ahead after 26 minutes.

The hapless G-Nev was later hauled off by Fergie and it was Goater again who compounded United’s misery.

His 100th City goal just five minutes after half-time secured three points and some long overdue bragging rights.

Manchester United 4-3 Manchester City, Sunday 20 September 2009

Catch your breath and soak it all in.

For sheer drama this clash had to make it onto our list and the Sky Sports FanZone reactions alone are worth their weight in gold.

Three times City came from behind with Wayne Rooney and Darren Fletcher (twice) handing the hosts the advantage.

Gareth Barry and Craig Bellamy had other ideas with the latter’s last-minute equaliser looking to have secured Mark Hughes’ side a point.

However, Michael Owen thrust his name into the Old Trafford history books with a late, late winner to cap off an unforgettable afternoon.

Manchester United 1-6 Manchester City, Sunday 23 November 2011

Derby victories don’t get much sweeter than this, do they?

Roberto Mancini’s City outfit tore apart their shell-shocked rivals and in doing so consigned United to their worst home defeat since 1955.

Mario Balotelli (who else?) played arguably the game of his life and it was his brace that put the visitors 2-0 up after an hour.

However, few could have predicted what else would unfold that afternoon.

The Sky Blues cut through their opponents with ease, Sergio Aguero the next man to feature on the scoresheet.

Darren Fletcher netted an 81st minute consolation but two late goals from Edin Dzeko and another from David Silva added to one of the most shocking scorelines in Premier League history.

Manchester United 2-1 Manchester City, Saturday 12 February 2011

“It defies description” was commentator Martin Tyler’s famous soundbite following one of THE greatest ever Premier League goals, scored by none other than Wayne Rooney.

His stunning overhead kick with 12 minutes remaining will be replayed for years to come but it wasn’t the only part of this game’s narrative.

Nani gave United the lead in a tense encounter, only for David Silva to level with a fortunate deflection off his back.

The Red Devils’ first goalscorer then turned provider. The Portuguese winger’s high, looping cross won’t go down as the greatest assist in the world but Rooney did the rest – and then some.

What’s your favourite Manchester derby? Let us know via @Ladbrokes!

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William Geldart

Having graduated with a degree in English Literature from the University of Wales, Bangor, William contributed to a number of online football blogs before finally finding his pot of gold at the end of the rainbow alongside the rest of the Ladbrokes News team. Now indulging passions for football, horse racing, greyhounds, boxing and political betting. Supports Wycombe Wanderers and can be spotted at various lower league and non-league grounds across the country.