5 Classic Encounters in Manchester Derby History

City host United in the first Manchester derby of the season at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. 


Both sides picked up crucial wins during midweek and will be looking to extend their winning run. The defending champions cruised to a 4-1 victory over Burnley at Turf Moor to return to winning ways, whereas United beat Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 in former manager Jose Mourinho's first return to Old Trafford.


Every season, the derby is one of the most talked about matches, and the upcoming clash between the two sides promises to be no different. United and City have played out many memorable encounters over the years, with last-minute goals, heavy thrashing and general chaos a common theme of their meetings.


Here are 5 of the best, and most classic Manchester derbies of recent times:

5. Man City 2-3 Man United (November 1993)

Manchester City travelled to Maine Road gloating about United's exit from the Champions League to Turkish side Galatasaray four days earlier. “Two-nil up and you f***ed it up,” chanted the City fans, and the home side looked to be cruising to a victory over their bitter rivals as two  Niall Quinn goals gave them the lead.


However, Eric Cantona was not ready to lose, and almost single-handedly dragged United back into the game with a brace of finely taken goals. A red tide swarmed all over City and Cantona converted Ryan Giggs' delicious pass before Roy Keane smashed home the winner in his first Manchester derby three minutes from time. 


A real statement of intent from United in their first double-winning campaign.

4. Man City 5-1 Man United (September 1989)

City celebrated their return to the First Division in style as goals from David Oldfield, Trevor Morley, and Ian Bishop saw them take a 3-0 lead going into half-time. Mark Hughes’s brilliant scissor provided brief hope for the visitors, but brief was all it was.


Oldfield nabbed his second of the game to restore City’s three-goal lead, and left-back Andy Hinchcliffe capped a glorious City move with a thundering header at the back post with 28 minutes left on the clock. 

3. Man City 2-3 Man United (December 2012)

Sir Alex Ferguson's men were baying for blood when the pair met in this mid-season clash. Just over a year after that 6-1 humiliation, United took revenge in another memorable derby at the Etihad Stadium. Roberto Mancini's team did not hold a candle to the United team as a double from Wayne Rooney put the visitors in front inside the opening half-hour.


Yaya Toure pulled a goal back five minutes later before Pablo Zabaleta struck with four minutes left on the clock. But it was Robin van Persie's injury-time free-kick that proved to be the difference as it deflected off Samir Nasri, beyond a stretching Joe Hart, and into the back of the net. United went on to win the title at a canter, finishing 11 points ahead of the wilted holders as Mancini was sacked with a game to spare.

2. Man United 5-0 Man City (November 1994)

For five long years, Alex Ferguson and the Manchester United supporters had carried the bitter memory of their 5-1 trouncing by the old enemy at Maine Road in September '89. There had been no shortage of derbies since, but United were desperate for revenge.


And it arrived at the Theatre of Dreams in the second week of November 1994, with a brutal demolition of their neighbours in a match best remembered for an extraordinary display by flying Russian winger Andrei Kanchelskis.


Eric Cantona opened the scoring before Ukrainian winger Kanchelskis bagged a hat-trick and Mark Hughes put the gloss on the final score. In the reverse fixture at Maine Road, United also won at a canter 3-0 thanks to strikes from Paul Ince, Kanchelskis and Andy Cole. Amazingly, City failed to win a single league derby game in the 90s.

1. Man United 1-6 Manchester City (October 2011)

This was Manchester United's worst home defeat since 1955. The 6-1 result was a historic thrashing on the Red Devils' turf, and set the stage for the Blues claiming the title come the season's end. Mario Balotelli opened the scoring and celebrated by brandishing a t-shirt with "Why Always Me?" emblazoned on the front before Jonny Evans' dismissal prompted City to run riot. 


Balotelli (again), Edin Dzeko (2), Sergio Aguero and David Silva scored with Fletcher's reply the lamest of consolations. City were crowned champions in May for the first time in 44 years. While United responded with an FA Cup victory over their close foes, City won the war with their famous last-gasp title win.

5 Classic Manchester Derbies Ahead of the Weekend's City vs. United Game