This Saturday sees United make the short trip across Manchester to take on bitter rivals Manchester City. After a fantastic performance against Spurs on Wednesday night, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men can go into this game with a little bit more hope than they might have had if Jose Mourinho had been more successful on his return to Old Trafford. Pep Guardiola’s side will have been buoyed after they beat Burnley 4-1 on Tuesday night, making up for their disappointing draw with Newcastle 3 days prior.
Season So Far:
Most United fans would agree that it’s been an awful season so far with very few highlights. The Reds sit sixth in the table on 21 points, closer to the relegation zone that they are to the top four. Meanwhile, City are third on 32 points, three points off second-place Leicester and 11 points off the leaders Liverpool. So realistically, for both Manchester clubs it’s been a season to forget so far albeit for different reasons.
United are expected to be without Paul Pogba for the Derby as the Frenchman is still struggling with the foot injury that has kept him out of the squad since September, but Ole is hopeful that Anthony Martial will feature against City after the forward missed out on the 2-1 win against Spurs due to a muscle injury. And who knows what’s happening with Nemanja Matic.
For City, defender Aymeric Laporte is still side-lined with the knee injury he picked up against Brighton in August, and record goal scorer Sergio Aguero is also unlikely to feature as he continues recovering from the injury he picked up in their 2-1 win over Chelsea.
Marcus Rashford is in the form of his life right now having scored nine goals and registered two assists in his last ten games for the Reds and he arguably should have scored his first hat trick for United on Wednesday night. He’ll be hoping to carry his form into the game on Saturday and add to his impressive tally against the so called ‘Top 6’. The return of Scott McTominay against Spurs was a massive boost to the side as well, with the young midfielder putting in an assured performance alongside a resurgent Fred, showing just how important a figure he’s become in our starting eleven.
For the Premier League Champions, forwards Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus pose a big threat, with the latter scoring twice against Burnley on Tuesday, and of course the mystical Belgian, Kevin de Bruyne, will be looking to add to his league-high nine assists and the little ginger man is more than capable of doing so.
The back four will need to be on the ball (pun intended) if they’re going to contain the fire power of this Manchester City side, but with the right tactics and if Marcus carries on the way he’s been performing, then there’s no reason why we can’t be celebrating a 22nd derby day victory.