Premier League – City stun United with derby win

EurosportSun, 10 Feb 19:57:00 2008

Manchester City caused a major upset at Old Trafford by beating United 2-1 in the Manchester derby to complete a league double over their city rivals.

FOOTBALL; Benjani, Manchester City, Feb 2008 - 0

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First-half goals from Darius Vassell and debutant Benjani were enough as Michael Carrick‘s effort in stoppage time proved to be a mere consolation.

It was an emotional day at Old Trafford with the 50th anniversary of the Munich disaster being remembered with old-fashioned style kits and an impeccably observed minute’s silence by both sets of fans.

However, after a tough week, United looked sluggish, and they badly missed the suspended Wayne Rooney, with Cristiano Ronaldo not at his usual troublesome best as he struggled to make an impact from a more central position.

Throughout the game United had lots of possession but struggled to create chances as Richard Dunne, Micah Richards, and Dietmar Hamann offered superb protection for Joe Hart in the City goal.

At the other end, City always looked dangerous on the break and it was from a Martin Petrov led counter-attack that they took the lead in the 24th minute.

The Bulgarian slipped in a ball for Stephen Ireland but Edwin van der Sar rushed out to save. The Dutch keeper then stopped a drive from Vassell, but the rebound came back out to the City man who then buried it at the second attempt.

Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic looked all at sea at the back and they then failed to pick up Benjani just before half-time which allowed the City man to flick home Petrov’s cross with his shoulder for a second.

United’s best effort in the first half was a fine turn and shot from Tevez on the edge of the area but Hart saved superbly.

Despite shifting around their formation, United were similarly unimaginative in the second-half as City quite comfortably defended their lead.

Carrick did curl a fine effort into the corner of the net in stoppage time but there was no time for United to push on for an equaliser.

It was the first time United have lost at home in the league this season, and all their defeats this campaign have come when Rooney was out of the side.