In the end we lost to Ryan Giggs ninth-minute goal - a looping header after Paul Robinson parried Cristiano Ronaldos swerving free-kick but created enough chances to go home with at least a point.
That early goal might have rocked us in front of a Premiership record attendance of over 75,000 but we recovered well, maintained our poise in possession and grew stronger and stronger.
Chances started to arrive towards the end of the first half and were carved out at regular intervals in the second half only for that equalising goal to elude us.
Edwin Van der Sar made a double save at close quarters from Michael Dawson and Ledley King and tipped over Pascal Chimbondas goalbound, deflected cross.
Dawson then headed wide from Jermaine Jenas corner and the best chances of all Jermain Defoe failed to connect properly with a header from Benoit Assou-Ekottos cross and Mido didnt get enough on his flicked header to seriously trouble Van der Sar from eight yards.
"I felt we could have had a result," insisted Martin afterwards. "In the last two seasons weve done well at Old Trafford and managed two good results two draws and we never gave a lot of chances away.
"This time we maybe gave away three or four but on the other hand I can recall five or six possibilities for us and thats the only disappointment.
"If you create five or six chances you should score but we didnt, so thats the frustrating thing.
"United have a lot of pace and quality up front but dont forget defensively they are strong as well. We watched three or four matches and they dont give a lot away.
"We knew exactly what we wanted to do and that was to hit the space behind the defence and we should have scored from that.
"We havent started the season well but as soon as we have a settled team we will get better and better, Im sure of that."
Martin Jol left Old Trafford with few doubts that we deserved some reward for our efforts against Manchester United.