Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson went to war with Roberto Mancini as Vincent Kompany’s first-half header sent Manchester City back to the top of the Barclays Premier League table.
The result means that if City win their final two games — at Newcastle on Sunday and at home to QPR on the last day — they will be crowned champions for the first time since 1968.
Clearly the prospect does not please Ferguson, who approached his opposite number in a finger-jabbing fury after Nigel de Jong had brought down Danny Welbeck in the second half.
The Italian responded in kind and at one point only fourth official Mike Jones stood between the pair who, after repeated clashes, were eventually pulled apart by their backroom staff.
Tempers had cooled at the final whistle enough for the customary handshake to take place, although the flare-up mattered little to City.
Just four games after their Arsenal debacle, after which their hopes appeared dead, City are back on top and agonisingly close to their holy grail after completing a league double over their great rivals for only the second time in 42 years.
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