Manchester United are coming off a big 2-1 home win over Tottenham Hotspur the last time out. In fact, we could say The Red Devils are riding one of their best run of form this season. However, things will become utterly complicated this weekend with a tough matchup against Manchester City on the horizon Saturday. The Citizens currently sit third in the Premier League standings and will represent United’s toughest test to date since the 1-1 draw against Liverpool. Kick-off for this match at Etihad Stadium has been scheduled for 17:30 GMT.
United will not feature Paul Pogba (ankle), Marcos Rojo (muscle injury), Diogo Dalot (groin), Eric Bailly (knee) and Timothy Fosu-Mensah (knee) due to injuries. However, Nemanja Matic (groin) could eventually feature after he didn’t play Wednesday against Tottenham. Anthony Martial missed Wednesday’s win over the Spurs but should return here, although it’s unclear whether he will start or not. If not, then Mason Greenwood would headline the attacking line once again.
Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola already announced Sergio Aguero will miss the game due to a thigh problem. Essentially, this means Gabriel Jesus will gain another start upfront for the reigning Premier League champions after scoring a brace at Burnley earlier this week. Long-term absentees Aymeric Laporte and Leroy Sane remain out, while left-back Oleksandr Zinchenko should at least make the 18-man squad. Central midfielder Ilkay Gundogan completed his one-game ban, and he should be eligible for selection here.
Manchester United have moved all the way up to sixth place with 21 points following their win over the Spurs. The Red Devils are on a decent run of form and enter this contest on a four-game undefeated streak at the Premier League level (W2, D2). A win could allow them to move past Wolverhampton providing what happens with the Wolves in their Sunday match against Brighton, but United still sit quite far from the title race. At this point, The Red Devils would be better suited to compete for a Champions League berth. Their EPL record this season stands at W5, D6, L4.
Meanwhile, City have not been playing as expected and surprisingly sit in third place of the standings with 32 points. They sit 11 points behind league leaders Liverpool, and it seems quite hard they would catch them given how dominant The Reds have looked this season. For what is worth, City are coming off a comfortable 4-1 away win at Burnley the last time out, further improving their EPL record to W10, D2, L3. City have also looked strong at home, notching five wins out of seven matches (W5, D1, L1), including each of their last three games at this venue.
What is our recent record against Manchester City?
Unsurprisingly, Manchester United’s recent record against Manchester City has not been very good. The Citizens won the two matches last season in the Premier League, and they also own a W3, D1, L1 mark in their last five games against The Red Devils. There are encouraging signs for Manchester United, though. Manchester United have lost just once in their last four trips to Etihad Stadium (W2, D1, L1).
The most recent meeting between these two sides happened in April this year. It ended with a 2-0 win for City at Old Trafford thanks to goals from Bernardo Silva and Leroy Sane.
Both teams have two of the strongest squads in the Premier League, but City are undoubtedly the better side when comparing both clubs. Plus, City have looked impressive at home while United have struggled on the road. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men have not kept a clean sheet on the road this season, and have won just once in seven matches (W1, D3, L3). Considering those two negative trends on United’s side, it would be fair to consider City as the favourites ahead of this contest.