One of the most famous moments of Arsenal’s 2003/04 invincible campaign was when Ruud Van Nistelrooy clattered a last-minute penalty against the crossbar and was surrounded by gloating Arsenal players angry at his conduct earlier in the game.

The miss would prove to be a sliding doors moment which showed how close the Gunners record of no losses was to being broken.

But the truth was that United was nowhere near completing with the North London side and finished 15 points adrift that year.

By February 2005, when the next iconic dispute occurred, United was undergoing an ever more substantial dip and was well into a significant rebuild of the team which had won three titles back to back at the turn of the century.

Having finished third the season before, a position it would retain at the end of that campaign, the Red Devils had been replaced by Chelsea as Arsenal’s main rival.

But before the game cameras caught captains Roy Keane and Patrick Viera involved in a now legendary argument in the tunnel.

“We’ll see you out there,” the Irishman told the Arsenal captain, ignoring appeals from referee Graham Poll to stay calm.

A pulsating encounter followed with United coming out 4-2 winners. However, it is less well mentioned that the game had almost no bearing on that season’s title which was convincingly won by a Chelsea side 12 points clear of Arsenal.

Whilst these moments, or indeed the Barthez lob, make for great TV highlights packages the truth is there was only one campaign where the sides were evenly matched and went blow for blow to the final day.

City and Liverpool have had three campaigns decided in that manner. Not only that the levels they pushed each other to is unsurpassed, with three league-winning campaigns settled by close to 100 points.