A brave display from Stoke saw them hold out for longer than they have done so far at Old Trafford in the Premier League, score for the first time at Old Trafford in the Premier League and, after 5-0 and 4-0 defeats in the last two PL encounters, get their best result at Old Trafford in the Premier League, even looking for a while like they may sneak a point.
Marc Wilson showed some great touches in the midfield whilst his midfield partner Whitehead got forward well and nodded in the equaliser from a Tuncay cross after Chicarito had opened the scoring in the first half. City were then denied by a fabulous strike from Nani with twenty minutes remaining.
The hosts were kept at bay by Stoke early on and the only chance fo note was a 30 yard strike by Gibson that fizzed wide.
The Irishman blazed another shot over but not before City had had a couple of corners themselves and Wilkinson had denied berbatov with a fine last ditch tackle.
The hosts were looking dangerous and Berbatov first time shot was saved well by Begovic whilst Giggs curled a free kick over the bar from 25 yards.
The deadlock was broken just before the half hour mark as a cross from Nani, after he easily evaded Collins, was turned in by a backheel from Chicarito, taking a deflection off the leg of Shawcross to further compound City's woes.
The half was played out by two seemingly evenly matched sides with Etherington and Wilson both going close from distance for the Potters.
City continued that momentum after the break and equalised when Tuncay trotyted down the left before cutting back inside and curled a cross onto the head off the ever running Whitehead, his 15 yard effort evading the dive of Kuszczak and going in off the far post.
City now had a spring in their step and pushed for a second, forcing the hosts to give away too much possession but they failed to create any clear cut chances and slack marking saw them fall behind once more with just over twenty minutes remaining.
A crossfield pass picked out Nani and Collins stood to far back, allowing the winger more than enough time and space to nip inside and curl a beautiful strike into the top corner and restore the lead.
That knocked the stuffing out of the Potters and although smoe fresh legs were thrown on, and City enjoyed some considerable time in the united half late on, they were unable to pull themselves back level for a second time.