Ahead of the last meeting between Manchester United and Liverpool, Wayne Rooney claimed he hated Liverpool. The following day we got thumped 4-1 and our favourable position in the league started to look increasingly shaky and the bragging rights were lost.

So ahead of Sunday’s game, another big scouse-hater has been interviewed, but he has gone for the more diplomatic approach, talking of his respect for Liverpool, whilst still acknowledging the rivalry.

“I’m a United fan and the rivalry is well documented. United fans want United to win and Liverpool to lose, and it’s the same the other way,” said Neville. “But I’ve never said I don’t respect Liverpool. You have to respect a team that have been as successful as they have and have the history and tradition they have. There are a variety of reasons why this fixture is so important – the cities are very close yet have different cultures, both clubs have enjoyed great periods at different times in the past 40 years, and now we’re level on the number of championships won. It’s always been a really great game to play in. We never want to lose, but it’s the same for both teams. Liverpool has been the biggest game of the season for a long time, going back 30 years or more. Our rivalry with Liverpool is bigger than with Manchester City. They are the best games to play in, but also the hardest to lose.”