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Preview: City will rip this United team a new one on Sunday! The players will need a miracle to get a victory at the Etihad!

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Manchester City -v- Manchester United

Premier League

Etihad, Manchester

Sunday 3 March 2023, KO 15:30 GMT

Manchester United travel across the City of Manchester to face Premier League champions Manchester City at the Etihad on Sunday afternoon. This is going to be one of the biggest matches of United’s season and will be a defining point for Erik ten Hag.

United have been good since the turn of 2024 but lost to Fulham last weekend with a pathetic display at Old Trafford which should have been so much different. It is starting to show that United will need a big clearcut in the summer as many players are culpable to the problems.

City will be relishing this clash with cross city rivals United as they still do not seem likely to mount a challenge against them, which really brings the sadness out. United have spent hundreds of millions on players but the gulf between the two is much larger and getting bigger.

United – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Forest 1-0 W, Fulham 2-1 L, Luton 2-1 W, Villa 2-1 W, West Ham 3-0 W, Wolves 4-3 W

Goals: 13 – Rasmus Hojlund, 8 – Scott McTominay, 7 – Bruno Fernandes, Alejandro Garnacho, 5 – Casemiro, Marcus Rashford, 2 – Diogo Dalot, Kobbe Mainoo, Harry Maguire, Anthony Martial, 1 – Antony, Christian Eriksen, Hannibal, Victor Lindelof, Raphael Varane

Assists: 8 – Bruno Fernandes, 5 – Marcus Rashford, 3 – Diogo Dalot, Alejandro Garnacho, 2 – Casemiro, Christian Eriksen, Rasmus Hojlund, Harry Maguire, Scott McTominay, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, 1 – Antony, Jonny Evans, Omari Forson, Victor Lindelof, Anthony Martial, Lisandro Martínez, Mason Mount, Facundo Pellistri, Luke Shaw

City – Form, Goals Scored & Assists

Luton 6-2 W, Bournemouth 1-0 W, Brentford 1-0 W, Chelsea 1-1 D, Copenhagen 3-1 W, Everton 2-0 W

Goals: 27 – Erling Haaland, 16 – Phil Foden, 15 – Julián Álvarez, 8 – Bernardo Silva, 7 – Rodri, 4 – Jérémy Doku, 3 – Manuel Akanji, Nathan Aké, Jack Grealish, 2 – Oscar Bobb, Kevin De Bruyne, Mateo Kovacic, 1 – Micah Hamilton, Rico Lewis, Cole Palmer, Kalvin Phillips

Assists: 11 – Kevin De Bruyne, 10 – Julián Álvarez, Phil Foden, 6 – Jérémy Doku, Erling Haaland, 5 – Bernardo Silva, 4 – Rico Lewis, Matheus Nunes, Rodri, 3 – Kyle Walker, 2 – Nathan Aké, Jack Grealish, 1 – Oscar Bobb, Sergio Gómez, Josko Gvardiol, Mateo Kovacic, John Stones

Previous Meetings & Connections

United and City have met 53 times in the Premier League. United have won 25 times with City winning 19 times and the pair drawing nine times. United have scored 76 goals, winning six penalties, scoring five. City have scored 77 goals, winning two penalties, scoring one.

United have kept 18 clean sheets in this fixtures with City keeping 12. This is a fiery derby and discipline has been an issue. United players have been shown 96 yellow cards and seven red cards with City players shown 19 yellow cards and one red card.

Billy Meredith, Denis Law, Brian Kidd, Terry Cooke, Peter Schmeichel, Andrew Cole, Carlos Tevez, Owen Hargreaves, Abbie McManus, Jane Ross, Aoife Mannion, Alex Greenwood, Charlie McNeill (academy) and Jadon Sancho have played for both teams in Manchester.

Team News

Lisandro Martinez (knee), Tyrell Malacia (knee), Aaron Wan-Bissaka (other), Mason Mount (calf), Anthony Martial (groin), Luke Shaw (thigh) and Rasmus Hojlund (other) are all ruled out due to injury, which has helped derail United’s positive start to 2024. United will have to make do.

Harry Maguire (other) has a 50% chance of feature against City on Sunday afternoon after missing the FA Cup victory over Forest on Wednesday evening. Ten Hag may need to rely on youth players to give some options on the bench, whether they are utilised or not.

Jack Grealish (groin/hip/pelvic) has been ruled out for the foreseeable future and will miss the clash with United – a team he was once linked to join. Josko Gvardiol (ankle/foot) has a 50% chance of featuring for City in their derby with United, which could be good for him and City.

Predicted United Starting XI – 4-2-3-1

Onana;

Dalot, Varane, Evans, Amrabat;

Casemiro, Mainoo;

Garnacho, Fernandes, Antony;

Rashford

Predicted City Starting XI – 4-1-4-1

Ederson;

Walker, Stones, Dias, Ake;

Rodri;

Foden, De Bruyne, Alvarez, Doku;

Haaland

Match Prediction

United are a team that have overall a poor season exiting the UEFA Champions League at the group stages and the Carabao Cup in the early stages as the holders before Liverpool lifted the cup last weekend. United are struggling in the Premier League too.

This is going to see City pile on the pressure and push Liverpool at the top off the league to try and retain the Premier League title in Jurgen Klopp’s final season at the Merseyside club. United will need to stand up and fight but with this team, the opposite is more likely.

United used to have passion against rivals like City but that has long gone. With a fully fit squad, United could have challenged the treble winners but it would seem like United will arrive, roll over and hand victory to City – but I would like to see them hold their own and grab some points.

Manchester City 4-1 Manchester United

Written by Paul

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