Patrice Evra believes it was important that he shook hands with Luis Suarez before Manchester United's 2-1 win over Liverpool, as a show of respect for the victims of the Hillsborough disaster.
Suarez, 25, withdrew from a handshake with Evra, 31, during February's league game between the two clubs at Old Trafford.
The incident followed on from the Uruguayan international's eight match ban, after the Football Association found him guilty of racially abusing the France international in last year's league game at Anfield.
But the United left-back said that the occasion on Sunday, Liverpool's first home game since the release of a report by the Hillsborough Independent Panel exonerating their fans from blame for the 1989 tragedy, and the history of the two clubs were more significant than his past with the Liverpool striker.
"I think the most important word today was respect because it was a game between two big clubs that have both had big tragedies," he told United's official television channel.
"That's why, although a lot of people were talking about me shaking hands with Suarez, the story of the clubs is bigger than that. It's why I think if I didn't shake his hand, I didn't respect the story of both clubs.
"In the end, this time, he shook my hand and it was more important to respect the families who lost a lot of people."
Robin van Persie's late penalty clinched United's first win at Anfield since 2007 and Evra was delighted to get the victory.
"We've been coming here for a long time and I've not been seeing a dressing room like that with smiles on the faces after the game," he added.
"I want to win against Liverpool. If I play badly or play well, I just want to win and that is what we did.
"I always say one of the best sensations is when we win at Anfield."