Monday, April 12, 2021
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Manchester City vs Manchester United: Preview, Line-up, and Prediction

It’s the famous Manchester Derby time! Football hosts a lot of derbies but the Manchester Derby is considered one of the hottest derbies of all. Manchester United are set to travel to Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City. The hosts are sitting comfortably at the top of the table with 65 points in 27 games. Man United’s title challenge has waded off quickly after being at the top of the table at one stage. Currently, they sit at the second spot with 51 points from 27 games. 

Analysis

It’s an away game and Man United hasn’t lost an away game since January 2020. On the other hand, they haven’t won a single game against a top-six side this season. Manchester City has won 21 games continuously. It’s a game where streaks are on the line. Which team will falter?

Man United are coming after a sluggish performance against Crystal Palace which ended in a 0-0 draw. In fact, four of their previous five Premier League games have ended in draws. That is 12 points dropped. 

If Red Devils have had won these games, we could have seen an amazing title race this season. On the other hand, Man City defeated Wolves 4-1 in the last Premier League game. A Manchester Derby win will stretch their lead at the top by 17 points. Most probably, this is the title-winning game for Pep Guardiola and his men.

When and Where?

Manchester City vs Manchester United: Preview, Line-up, and Prediction

Manchester City will host Manchester United at Etihad Stadium in the Premier League fixture on 7th March (10:00 PM IST).

Team News and Expected Line-up

Manchester City

Nathan Ake has been out since December due to a muscular injury. The young defender has resumed full training now but he is still a doubt. Other than him, Pep Guardiola will a full squad to choose from.

Expected Line-up: Ederson; Cancelo, Ruben Dias, John Stones, Zinchenko; Ilkay Gundogan, Rodri, Kevin De Bruyne; Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling, Gabriel Jesus

Manchester United

Paul Pogba has failed to regain fitness for this all-important derby. He will be a big miss for Solskjaer. Apart from him, Juan Mata and Phil Jones also stay out. Due to a personal reason, David De Gea is also set to miss the big clash. Anthony Martial and Donny Van De Beek were left out against Crystal Palace. It has to be seen whether two players will be fit enough to get back into the squad.

Expected Line-up: Dean Henderson; Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw; Scott McTominay, Fred, Bruno Fernandes; Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood, Edinson Cavani

Head to Head stats: Manchester City vs Manchester United

In the past 6 Manchester derbies which Etihad Stadium has hosted, Man City has won only once and lost four times. Man City’s last home victory came in November 2018. Earlier in this season when the two sides met at Old Trafford, the game concluded with a dull 0-0.

Differentials

Kevin De Bruyne – Manchester City

The Belgian international has missed quite a few games this season yet he has the highest assists to his name (11). Can he stretch that tally further?

Bruno Fernandes – Manchester United

Bruno Fernandes vs Kevin De Bruyne! The Portuguese international is just one assist behind De Bruyne but has the highest number of goal involvements this season (25). Kevin De Bruyne has 14 goal involvements to his name. Can he finally deliver in this big game?

The 12TH Man Prediction: Manchester City 1-1 Manchester United

Over the years Manchester derbies have brought in huge surprises. And, we would love to see a classic game between the two rivals rather than a dull derby we saw in December last year. We would go with a safe prediction and hope that we are proven wrong!

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