Three Thoughts on Manchester United’s 2-1 Victory Over Liverpool: Fan’s Reaction

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On Sunday, September 24, Manchester United beat Liverpool 2-1 to win their fourth straight Premier League match. The Red Devils are now second in the EPL table.

Here are three thoughts on the match:

Hillsborough remembered

It's hard to think of anything but the rivalry whenever Liverpool and Manchester United face each other. However, I have to admit that the stirring tribute to the 1989 Hillsborough disaster was one of the most memorable moments I've ever seen at a soccer game. During the ceremony, United legend Bobby Charlton brought a bouquet of 96 red roses onto the field, and Ryan Giggs and David Gerrard released 96 red balloons to pay their respects to the people who lost their lives.

I also felt a little angry as Liverpool supporters held up signs denouncing the police cover-up that blamed the 1989 crowd for the deaths. It bothers me that the local police protected themselves from their responsibility in the tragedy. The only justice found in this situation is that the truth eventually came out. I can only hope that those who lost their loved ones now have their closure and can move on with their lives. If anything, I think that Sunday's ceremony healed some of the wounds left by the disaster.

Liverpool had it chances

I understand that many Liverpool are upset about Jonjo Shelvey's red card in the 39th minute, but I think it's a clear foul. Shelvey went in with his studs up, missed the ball, and hit Manchester United defender Jonny Evans's body. It doesn't get any clearer than that. There are some people who are upset that Evans didn't get carded either, but he made contact with the ball. Shelvey didn't.

There will always be people who claim that United get the benefit of the doubt on calls, but Shelvey's foul is a clear red card. The conspiracy theorists should move on to another target.

Unmotivated play

Anfield is a tough place to play; everyone knows that. However, I'm still surprised at how poorly the Red Devils played in the first half of the match. Manchester United might be on a winning streak, but they aren't playing like title contenders. Liverpool dominated possession early on, and it wasn't until the Anfield club took the lead that Manchester United finally woke up.

I don't expect the Red Devils to put up flawless performances every time they take the field; that's just not possible. But I do expect Manchester United to play top quality football, and that's not what's happening right now. I hope that changes before the team faces off with the league's heavyweights.

Derek Ciapala has been following Manchester United since childhood. He has been published on Yahoo! Sports, GatewayMMA.com and multiple other websites. You can check him out on Facebook or Twitter @dciapala.

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