But it was the celebration of the Brazilian that ultimately left him red-faced. The game was 67 minutes in when the midfielder blasted past Andre Onana from close range, which signified an overdue equaliser for the hosts after they wasted a number of chances.
And the 25-year-old then appeared to roar in delight in the direction of the Cameroonian, before executing a shoulder shimmy right in front of him. Luiz wasn’t done there, tearing off towards the Holt End in a bid to excite the home fans.
Tellingly, he was then hauled back by teammate John McGinn, with the rest of the Villa side seemingly keen to get back to halfway and press for a winner. Instead, with the game seemingly petering out for a draw, it was United who snatched a huge three points in the race for the Champions League.
And Ferdinand soon took aim after the final whistle. He posted a picture of Luiz down on his knees after scoring, and tagged the player on X as he wrote: “You ok @dgoficial?” It was followed by four laughter emojis.
The equaliser wasn’t the only flashpoint that involved the Vasco de Garma academy product. He was involved in a furious altercation with Hojlund as the Danish striker left the field in the closing minutes.
Hojlund appeared to be deliberately taking his time after being substituted, and was subjected to abuse from the home crowd. He responded by holding up two fingers on his right hand and one on his left to underline the score.
That action incensed Luiz, who rushed over to angrily grab his opponent. A furious exchange between the pair followed, with Hojlund eventually making his way to the dugout after they were separated.
The result keeps alive United’s hopes of again securing Champions League qualification. Ten Hag’s side are now six points behind fourth-placed Tottenham, and are within five of Villa who sit between the two sides in the league table.