A cakewalk, a canter, call it what you will: United, inspired by a sublime Dimitar Berbatov performance, tore Blackburn apart at Old Trafford on Saturday.
The Bulgarian netted an incredible five times as the Reds smashed seven goals past Sam Allardyce’s men to surge to the top of the Barclays Premier League.
It was the sort of one-sided performance fans had expected last weekend when Wigan Athletic were reduced to nine men. Instead, it was a full complement of Blackburn players that were on the receiving end of the Reds’ best performance of the season, and United's biggest win since AS Roma were beaten by the same scoreline in April 2007.
Sir Alex made six changes, including his entire back four, to the side that won in Glasgow on Wednesday night, with Rafael, Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic and Patrice Evra all returning and Anderson and Ji-sung Park handed starts in midfield.
Wayne Rooney and Berbatov kept their spots up front and the pair took little more than a minute to combine for the Reds’ first goal. Rooney outjumped his marker at the near post to meet Nani's cross and his glancing header fell to Berbatov, who volleyed home a simple finish from six yards.
It was the perfect start for Sir Alex's men and, in particular, Berbatov, who'd previously not found the net since scoring a sensational hat-trick against Liverpool in September. Four days earlier, Sir Alex had predicted the Bulgarian would benefit more than most from Rooney's return; the early evidence at Old Trafford reinforced that belief.