Manchester United remain on top of the Premier League table, with a three-point advantage over Liverpool, as the season approaches its halfway stage. It is a state of affairs that would have felt utterly ludicrous as recently as early October, when they were losing 6-1 at home to Tottenham, and even now will cause a few eyebrows to travel skywards.

Ole Gunnar Solskjær, the manager, admitted during the week that his team had “not really set the world alight too many times.” They continued the trend at Anfield, wanting primarily to be difficult to beat, and yet they will reflect upon having not one but two glorious opportunities to secure a smash-and-grab victory over their fiercest rivals.

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