Manchester United vs Manchester City Preview: Team News, Match Facts & Predictions
Manchester United host Manchester City on Saturday in one of their most evenly contested Premier League encounters in years.
United have won eight consecutive games and could equal their longest winning streak in all competitions since Alex Ferguson retired as manager in 2013.
Second-placed City, who are four points clear of United, lost to Southampton in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday.
“to improve [United’s] “The team is clear,” City manager Pep Guardiola said.
United are close to signing Burnley striker Woweghurst on loan but he will be ineligible to play as he would have needed to score by 12:00 BST on Friday.
There is no doubt that Anthony Martial is suffering from a leg injury, so the in-form Marcus Rashford, who has scored seven goals in his last six matches, could play as a striker.
Guardiola says United are in a title race
United have lost just once in 18 games since a 6-3 defeat at City in October and Guardiola says Erik ten Hag’s side are not out of the title race.
“When I see the way United play, why not? Their playing is good,” he said. “It’s a beautiful thing for us, the challenge is to prove ourselves again.”
Guardiola added: “I had the feeling that the strength and quality of Man United was always there
“It’s just a matter of being stable, being patient and supporting the manager unconditionally. United are now playing how they have played all of their history.
“I said a few months ago that United are back. People say they’re not back. They’re back. I knew it, I felt it.”
Ten Hag, whose team is nine points behind leaders Arsenal. He says the hosts must prove just how far they have come since that humiliation at City in October.
“We have to prove it [how far they’ve come] on the field. “There is one truth, and that is always on the field,” said the coach.
“It won’t come overnight, there has been a process in the past months where we evolve and progress. We have to be brave, act with faith and play our game.
“We’ve taken our lesson [from the 6-3 loss] Since then, we have made tremendous progress. We have to continue this process.”
Stones and Dalot to miss
City will be without England defender John Stones, who has a fitness issue and also missed their shock midweek defeat in the Premier League Cup.
Midfielder Ilkay Gundogan noted that they lacked hunger after losing to Saint Mary’s.
“What happened didn’t surprise me,” Guardiola said. “We tried to avoid it and hope it doesn’t happen again, but it happened because we won four Premier League titles in five years.
“After two times in a row, it could happen. We weren’t ready to go there. I was worried it might happen and unfortunately it did. I don’t know if it will happen again, but I’m not worried.”
City striker Erling Haaland has scored 21 goals in 16 Premier League matches. He needs just two more goals to equal the Golden Shoe tally of the previous three seasons.
United will be without full back Diogo Dalot with a hamstring injury, while midfielder Donny van de Beek will be out for the rest of the season with a knee injury.
Predicted by Chris Sutton
I’m very clear in my mind about how this game is going.
Manchester United have really improved under Erik ten Hag, and I don’t think they get enough credit for their progress since the start of the season.
There is something not quite right about Manchester City, who haven’t done their best since the season restarted after the World Cup, but I still expect them to win.
Some City players like Joao Cancelo and Kyle Walker look out of shape, and even Kevin De Bruyne has been below his best, but part of their problem is due to what is known as ‘Pep Roulette’ – Pep Guardiola’s ever-changing selections.
A bet in the Carabao Cup on Southampton on Wednesday, when Calvin Phillips entered midfield on his first start, did not pay off.
Guardiola says he has some “ridiculous” thoughts On how his team beat United, but I’m sure that will include giving Erling Haaland a start. He’s going to play with his best team, and if they give anything like they can do, they’re going to win – it’s that simple.
I was very confident that City would absolutely crush United in October and it turns out I didn’t do enough with my prediction – I said 4-1 and it ended up being 6-3. It will be much closer this time, but Pep will still collect points.
face to face
- Manchester City’s 6-3 Premier League win over Manchester United in October set a record for most goals in this match.
- United have lost their last three league meetings. The fourth in a row would equal the club’s Premier League record for defeat against the same opposition, which it set against Liverpool in 2002 and City in 2014.
- City have won nine of their 14 visits to Old Trafford in all competitions, straight after a run of one victory in 32 attempts.
- United can go four consecutive home games without scoring against City for only the second time, and the first since 1914.
- The Red Devils have not dropped points from a winning position in the Manchester derby since their 1-1 draw at Old Trafford in September 2005.
- Manchester United have secured an unprecedented 35 points in the Premier League since beating Liverpool on August 22.
- United are the only team to win all Premier League matches they have captained this season, doing so 11 times.
- They can win five consecutive league matches for the first time since April 2021. This included a 2-0 win over Manchester City.
- United recorded nine consecutive home wins in all competitions for the first time since December 2017. That run ended with a 2-1 Premier League defeat by Manchester City.
- The Red Devils lost four straight league games against the defending champions, by a total score of 16-6. They have never suffered five consecutive defeats against the defending champions.
- Marcus Rashford has scored in all six of Manchester United’s matches since the World Cup.
- However, Rashford has yet to score in any of his last five matches against Manchester City, managing just one shot on goal in total.
- Erik ten Hag could become the first Manchester United coach since David Moyes lost his first two Manchester derby matches.
- Manchester City have won three consecutive away matches in the English Premier League.
- City scored several goals in eight of their first nine league games this season, but have since done so in just three of their eight matches.
- Kevin de Bruyne has failed to score or assist in any of his last five Premier League matches, his longest since a run of 10 consecutive matches between December 2018 and March 2019.
- This is Pep Guardiola’s 500th first-class match as a coach. His 76% winning percentage is the best of any manager in Europe’s top five leagues having taken charge of 100 or more matches since Guardiola’s first season in 2008-09.
- Guardiola has won six competitive derbies in Manchester at Old Trafford, twice as many as at the Etihad Stadium.
Predict Manchester United’s starting line-up for their next game – remember you can change the line-up!
Predict the Manchester City starting line-up for the next match – remember you can change the line-up!
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