Starting XI Prediction: Anthony Martial to play a central role to prove his goalscoring ability against Manchester City?

Manchester United will be pitted against Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League on Sunday. The noisy neighbours are currently nine points ahead of United after 11 matches this season, which means United will need to start getting results against those above them in order to keep turning their unfortunate season around. The match could end with United being 12, nine or just six points behind City, depending on whether they win, lose or draw.

Jose Mourinho’s side had some good results recently, coming from behind away to Bournemouth in the Premier League last weekend, winning 2-1 then doing the same away to Juventus in the UEFA Champions League, winning 2-1. Doing that at City could be a great end to this week, putting United in good stead heading into the final international break of 2018. Here is the team that I feel should play against Manchester City this weekend, fitness and injury concerns are taken into account.

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Goalkeeper: David De Gea

The Spanish number one will be ready to go again following a victory over Juventus on his 28th birthday. The form of De Gea has been getting better this season, despite the fact the defence is not the best, even though they are the same players that became the second-best defence in the Premier League last season. Conceding goals seems to be the thing for United this season, outscoring the opposition recently to earn the much-needed victories.

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Defenders: Ashley Young, Victor Lindelof, Chris Smalling, Luke Shaw

The defence has been the same for the past few matches and should not be changed unless it needs to be because of injury or fitness issues. The fact that Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, and Marcos Rojo still remain on the sidelines is good for strength-in-depth, although the trio has had few chances this season. Luke Shaw has really overcome his demons to find himself as the first-choice left-back with Ashley Young his opposite number. Victor Lindelof had a great game against Juventus a few weeks back, boosting his confidence.

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Midfield: Ander Herrera, Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba

A midfield trio could be best to encounter City this weekend. Having Ander Herrera, Nemanja Matic, and Paul Pogba, if fit, would be the best option, although Mourinho will have other options in Marouane Fellaini, Andreas Pereira and Fred. United have plenty of options in midfield and having that depth on the bench will be good for United as the match gets on with fresh players able to contend the Premier League champions, hopefully, to push for that much-needed scalping of the noisy neighbours.

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Forward Three: Juan Mata, Anthony Martial, Marcus Rashford

The forward area has been the problem for United recently. Romelu Lukaku has not scored in his last nine matches for his club, scoring plenty of goals for his country. He was dropped for the Bournemouth game, seemingly after struggling with an injury in training the day before the match, also missing the victory over Juventus. He has trained ahead of this match, which could see him in contention. Juan Mata, Anthony Martial, and Marcus Rashford could be trusted to start though. The Frenchman leading the line.

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