Robin Van Persie scored an injury time free kick as Manchester United ended Manchester City’s 37 match unbeaten home run in the Premier League to go six points clear at the top of the table.
With the game coming to an end, a mistake from Gael Clichy allowed Van Persie to curl home a free-kick to send United fans into raptures.
Man City had earlier come back from two goals down. Wayne Rooney slotted home a nice counter attacking move before Rafael crossed for the striker to add his second and leave keeper Joe Hart rooted to the spot.
It was Rooney’s 151st premier league goal to take him to 6th place on the all time Premier League scoring charts.
Yaya Toure and Pablo Zabaleta had got City level in what seemed to be an important point for the champions, but it wasn’t to be.
Although City started strongly it was United who scored against the run of play. A quick United counter attack gave Ashley Young a chance to find Rooney who took it round Gael Clichy before slotting the ball past Joe Hart.
With City struggling to create any clear cut chances, Rooney got his second of the game. Another swift attacking move between Antonio Valencia and Rafael led to Rooney having the simplest of finishes to put United two ahead.
City’s problems worsened when influential captain Vincent Kompany had to substituted with a groin injury midway through the first half.
Gareth Barry had arguably City’s best chance of the first half but dragged his shot wide after good initial play from Mario Balotelli to set him up.
The second half was a lively affair, with the introduction of Carlos Tevez a turning point in a side that lacked any spark with Balotelli on the pitch previously.
City’s improvement was evident and they were rewarded on the hour mark. A fantastic double save from David De Gea was not enough as the ball broke to Yaya Toure who stroked the ball calmly past the United keeper.
Despite the continued pressure, United felt aggrieved when a brilliant turn and shot by Van Persie was turned in on the rebound by Ashley Young, only for the offside flag to be raised.
City’s persistence was rewarded late on when a corner was cleared to the edge of the box for Zabaleta to fire through the bodies into the corner to draw City level.
When the game seemed to be coming to an end, Gael Clichy tried to dribble the ball out of defence leading to United being awarded a free kick. Robin Van Persie, on his Manchester derby debut, stepped up to seal the win for United and hand Manchester City their first Premier League defeat of the season.