Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has admitted Manchester United copied Liverpool’s Champions League final tactics in their 1-1 draw against the Reds at Old Trafford.
A late Adam Lallana strike cancelled out Marcus Rashford’s opener on an afternoon of controversy at the Theatre of Dreams.
Rashford’s first-half goal stood despite a forensic examination of an apparent foul by Victor Lindelof on Divock Origi in the build-up.
Sadio Mane thought he had levelled almost immediately but the strike was ruled out by VAR after replays showed the Senegalese had controlled the ball with his arm.
But Lallana struck late to preserve Liverpool’s unbeaten start to the season and leave them six points clear of second-placed Manchester City in the Premier League.
Speaking on Match of the Day 2, former United midfielder Darren Fletcher pointed out United’s tendency to play the ball in behind Liverpool on the flanks to get at their rivals.
And Solskjaer admitted that was a ploy used after watching the Reds take an early lead in the Champions League final against Tottenham last season.
Fletcher said: “People are obsessed with passing the ball but just spinning them down the sides and turning them. It creates a tempo in the stadium and the opposition don’t like it.
“We always used to play like that early on, get the ball forward and turn teams and it gives you a foothold in the game to play football.”
Solskjaer added: “Liverpool won the Champions League final with a hook in behind in the first 40 seconds. You have to be unpredictable and I think we have been like that today.”