Sebastian Schweinsteiger came to Bayern’s rescue – and was then sent off – as Man Utd were held to a 1-1 draw in the Champions League quarter-final first-leg at Old Trafford.
Nemanja Vidic’s header had given David Moyes’ side a surprise lead but Schweinsteiger provided the holders with an invaluable away goal.
The German international will miss the return leg in Munich next week, after receiving a second yellow for a challenge on Wayne Rooney in the final minute.
United were denied a third-minute lead when Danny Welbeck was penalised for a high boot before lashing the ball beyond Manuel Neuer.
Bayern, who arrived having won seven consecutive Champions League away games, came close through Arjen Robben’s well-placed shot, but it was United who had the first half’s clearest opening.
Welbeck latched onto Wayne Rooney’s through ball, after Jerome Boateng blundered, but the England striker was thwarted by Neuer’s outstretched hand.
A set piece always appeared the likeliest way the home side would profit from their fleeting ventures forward and so it proved just shy of the hour mark.
Rooney’s corner appeared to be drifting behind Vidic, but the Serbian adjusted his body to plant a firm header into the bottom corner.
Their lead lasted all of eight minutes.
Robben released Rafinha, and when the Brazilian’s cross was met at the far post by Mario Mandzukic, his header across goal was drilled into the roof of the net by Schweinsteiger.
Carlos Velasco Carballo judged there to be a coming together between David Alaba and Antonio Valencia, when another referee may have brandished a second yellow for the Ecuadorian winger.
It was a moment of good fortune that deserted the visitors in the dying embers when Schweinsteiger received his marching orders.
The last time Old Trafford welcomed a match of this pedigree was three years ago; how many more before the next is unknown, but on tonight’s showing, there is life in the old dog yet.