For the followers of Liverpool, it was the weak side which paved way for Manchester United’s victory, but at the end of the day, it was a clash which was more important, as ManU cruised into the fifth round of the FA Cup with a 3-2, at the Old Trafford here on Sunday.
Bruno Fernandes was the man of the day as he tricked off a superb free-kick propelling for the Ole Gunnar Solskjær side the victory over the Premier League champions Liverpool.
Coming in from the bench, Fernandes was only on the pitch for the last 25 minutes but made his mark in style at Old Trafford, firing home a set piece from the edge of the area as United set up a tie with David Moyes’ West Ham United.
Mohamed Salah had opened the scoring for Liverpool after a superb through ball from Roberto Firmino while Mason Greenwood levelled up after a perfect cross-field pass from fellow England international Marcus Rashford.
Greenwood returned the favour as Rashford put United ahead for the first time, going 2-1 up just three minutes after the break.
But Liverpool wasn’t done there and Salah’s second, again via a Firmino assist, pulled this thrilling tie back to parity ahead of an exciting finale.
That was until Fernandes struck 12 minutes from time, with United progressing beyond the fourth round for the seventh season in succession to set up a tie with the Premier League Hammers.
Elsewhere, Tammy Abraham’s hat-trick steered eight-time champions Chelsea into the Emirates FA Cup fifth round with a 3-1 win over Luton Town.
The England striker had two goals before the 20-minute mark but the game wasn’t wrapped up until he completed the treble with 15 minutes of the tie remaining.
Luton had threatened a comeback with Jordan Clark finishing on the half-volley to make it 2-1 but Abraham’s first Stamford Bridge hat-trick proved enough for victory.
Frank Lampard’s side will face another Championship team next up, with a trip to Barnsley on the cards after they overcame divisional rivals Norwich City on Saturday.
Two more Premier League teams booked their places in the fifth round with Leicester City and Burnley both prevailing on Sunday afternoon.
The Foxes had to do things the hard way with Mads Bech Sørensen putting Championship side Brentford ahead after just six minutes.
But they came out firing in the second half, with Cengiz Ünder and Youri Tielemans turning the tie on its head within six minutes of the second half, while James Maddison continued his fine form to seal the win.
This was Maddison's fourth goal in four games for Leicester but surprisingly his first in an Emirates FA Cup match, helping his side set up a fifth-round tie with fellow Premier League side Brighton & Hove Albion.
Burnley will have to wait until Tuesday to find out who they'll play next up after they got the better of top-flight rivals Fulham at Craven Cottage.
Jay Rodriguez made the most of the visitors' first-half pressure to open the scoring, and his penalty 19 minutes from time sealed the tie.
There was still time for Kevin Long to make it 3-0, with Sean Dyche's side to face either Bournemouth or Crawley Town for a place in the quarter-finals.
Meanwhile, a fifth-round tie with either Wycombe Wanderers or Tottenham Hotspur awaits for Everton after they were 3-0 victors against Sheffield Wednesday.
The returning Dominic Calvert-Lewin was on the scoresheet before half time while Richarlison and Yerry Mina rounded off the win in the second half, both goals assisted by James Rodriguez.