IF any football fan thought that the Manchester United v Liverpool clash would pass without any major talking points, then they must clearly be living on another planet. Unfortunately the game will be remembered for all the wrong reasons, as the Evra/Suarez saga continued to linger on.
Never have I seen a handshake (or lack of one) analysed in such detail. It was disappointing that Suarez ignored Liverpools instructions to shake on it and move on. The talented striker snubbed Evra and the United skipper was livid.
This started an afternoon of thunderous challenges and talking points. Suarez had a bit of a nightmare in the first half and his frustrations were shown when he rocketed the ball on the half time whistle towards the dugouts.
There was a handbags at dawn in the tunnel with rumours of spitting circulating around the media after the game. Fortunately, the second half was about the football and United raced into a two goal lead with Wayne Rooney grabbing a quick fire double.
Rooney is the difference between an average Manchester United and a good United. His link up play was outstanding and he seems to have a real understanding with Danny Welbeck. United out smarted Liverpool in midfield where Scholes and Giggs were sublime. Two old stagers showing young midfielders like Henderson and Spearing how to play ball.
The introduction of Bellamy and Carroll helped Liverpool to make a spirited comeback but it was too little too late.
Celebrations in front of the Stretford End were a little more exuberant than normal. Evra and Rafael certainly did not hold back in their celebration and several of the Liverpool team took great offence to it.
Now what happened at the final whistle and in the interviews with the two managers were what dominated the Sunday papers. Ferguson was furious with the behaviour of Suarez and admitted that he has let the club down.
Amazingly, Dalglish refused to condemn the actions of the little striker and he suddenly morphed into Arsene Wenger when he exclaimed he did not see it. Next he will be buying dud centre forwards!
The embarrassment did not end there for Dalglish and Suarez. On Sunday afternoon the club released a statement from the pair issuing apologies for their behaviour.
Hopefully the matter has now been put to bed. I sincerely hope both sides move on and get on with what really matters, winning three points each Saturday.
Man City climbed back to the top of the summit with a gritty 1-0 win away at Villa. Joe Hart could very well be the difference between first and second place. There is no doubt in my mind that he is one of the best keepers in the league and his form over the next few months could be crucial for club and country.
Finally I enjoyed a wonderful afternoon at the Coleraine Showgrounds on Saturday.
All of our youth teams were provided with free entry and refreshments prior to the match. Much appreciated by parents, players and coaches.
It was a long day as I had taken my Under 12s to Ballymena to defeat Carniny 2-0 and then travelled onto Coleraine to watch our first team defeated by 3-0. Coleraine showed their Premier League experience and despite being without our two first choice strikers we gave them a good test.
A lot of work is needed both on and off the field of play if we are to achieve the dream of Premier League football the ‘Fernabeu’ next season.