Roberto Mancini and Sir Alex Ferguson went face-to-face as their teams went toe-to-toe, and it was Manchester City who prevailed on a night of high tension and drama at the Etihad Stadium.
Vincent Kompany scored the only goal as City, three weeks after appearing to crash out of the Barclays Premier League title race, regained the initiative at the top of the table.
The game may not have been the thriller the build-up had suggested and an estimated TV audience of 400million had craved. Yet with so much on the line, that was probably always too much to hope for.
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