Here are the eleven key points you should know ahead of Sunday’s derby:
(1) Manchester United will hope to make it four wins in a row across all competitions when they host neighbourhood rivals Manchester City in yet another edition of the Manchester Derby. The Reds won this exact fixture last season by coming back from a goal down to win 2-1. The hosts are looking for consecutive home victories against The Cityzens since 2010-11.
(2) The 1-0 narrow loss against Crystal Palace came as a stutter for Man United and the following defeat against Galatasaray in the Champions further dented their progress. However, since then, they have mustered two league wins and three points versus Copenhagen in their previous outing bringing The Red Devils back in contention to qualify for the Round of 16.
(3) Erik Ten Hag has a big problem to counter as star man Marcus Rashford has failed to score a single goal across United’s last nine matches. The Englishman last scored the only goal for the visitors against Arsenal as his side went down to a 3-1 defeat at the beginning of September. While Scott McTominay and club captain Harry Maguire return to form, the Dutch manager will hope that the other players synchronize well and pave the way for Rashford to strike.
(4) The involvement of Casemiro is an uncertainty for tomorrow’s match. Erik Ten Hag said: “Case is a race against the clock, he is not 100 per cent.”
(5) Sergio Reguilon and Raphael Varane didn’t feature against Copenhagen but are set to return tomorrow. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has been training recently and is on his way to full fitness.
(6) With the 3-1 victory over Young Boys in their last match, Manchester City made it 17 consecutive games unbeaten in Europe. The Blues endured an early departure from the EFL Cup this season after a 1-0 loss to Newcastle United at St. James’ Park at the end of September.
(7) City will hope to make it three wins in a row to build some momentum for their title defence. Pep Guardiola’s men have failed to make a dominant start to their campaign following losses to Wolves and Arsenal. However, they can boast of having the best defence in the league till now, conceding only seven goals across nine games.
(8) While Jack Grealish hasn’t made a start to a game since August, Pep Guardiola restored his faith in the player and said:
“The plan is for him to play like he did in Switzerland,”
“We trust a lot in him. We know his ability and he has to fight with his mates to play a lot and play as best as possible in every single action, every single minute, every single game.
“We need him, we need everyone. I am very pleased for the game he played.”
(9) On the opposition, Guardiola said:
“United always have been – it doesn’t matter the manager – always they are a tough opponent,”
“The qualities of the individuals they have, the stadium, the character they have, the momentum.
“They can score goals, we know the quality they have. Always that has been and always it will be.”
(10) The Man City manager provided a preview of the Manchester Derby and how it means to his side. He said:
“Old Trafford, when I was in Barcelona or Bayern Munich and I travelled to England it was always special,” It is a special place and here it is special for our fans.”
“It is a game not like an FA Cup final or last games of the season that defines winning or not the Premier League, still we have only played nine fixtures and there are 87 points to play. We have to be focused.”
(11) Kevin De Bruyne will miss the game through injury. Defender Manuel Akanji will be unavailable with a suspension.