Menu

Ratings: Fernandes and Shaw give United victory over City; Martial’s performance was a key point in the victory – Solskjaer will be pleased

Manchester United beat Manchester City 2-0 at the Etihad Stadium in the Premier League. It was an instant start for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side after Anthony Martial won a penalty which was scored by Bruno Fernandes in the second minute of the match. City then got themselves into the game, attacking United but the quality was not the greatest and United started to dominate the match at times, pushing forward and threatening to score again. United led 1-0 at the break and started the second half in good stead as Luke Shaw scored the second goal of the game after a throw by Dean Henderson started the attack with Marcus Rashford, who was later injured, provided the assist. Solskjaer will be happy as Manchester turns red again. Jonny won’t be pleased though!

United started off in fine fettle against the Premier League leaders, pushing to get an early goal, which was something we had not seen in the last three matches. Marcus Rashford had the ball outside the box and nudged it to Anthony Martial, who was just inside when Gabriel Jesus challenged him, giving away a penalty in the first minute of the match. Bruno Fernandes took the penalty, beating Ederson from the spot to put United 1-0 up, scoring the first goal in three matches. Luke Shaw then had a good chance a few minutes later after Joao Cancelo’s dithering on the ball resulted in United regaining possession in the box and Shaw firing into Ederson, who made the save to deny United from going 2-0 up early in the match. United have turned up today.

City started to get themselves back into the game after going 1-0 down but Kevin De Bruyne was really not in the zone, which was a worrying sight for the Noisy Neighbours. City grew into the clash, getting more of the ball and starting to control the game, despite not being very fluent in front of goal at this stage. United may find themselves walking a tightrope at stages in the match and they will need to keep the pressure off them by retaining the ball themselves and pressuring City. The home side had a few chances to get something back from the match but wayward shooting and United defending well got the better of their shots, which saw United still in the lead on the midway point of the half.

Dean Henderson was having a positive game for United in the first half, making one good save to deny City from getting level inn the match, which was good to see, He seems to be much more vocal in the box than David De Gea, which is a good sign that he has all the ingredients to take his place in the team under Solskjaer. These next few matches will be good for him to continue showing just what he can do for his club. Harry Maguire was the first player in the match to be booked around the 33rd minute of the match, which is something he will need to stem if he does not want a suspension. Henderson made another good save to deny City in the 38th minute of the match, which is good going for the goalkeeper. It was still 1-0 to United at the end of the half.

There were no changes for either side at the start of the second half with United looking to double their lead from the early stages of the half, which came true for them. In the 50th minute of the match, Dean Henderson threw the ball out to Luke Shaw, who ran up the left flank and played the ball out to Marcus Rashford, who was further out on the flank. Shaw then cut in towards the box with a crowded Rashford playing the ball into the box, he took a second before launching his shot, beating Ederson, who watched the ball cross the line for United’s second of the match. Shaw was then booked in the 58th minute of the match with Henderson booked for time wasting two minutes later. United needed to keep this heads at this stage of the game.

United were close to scoring a third goal in the 69th minute of the match, which resulted in a corner but Ederson claimed it with City then on the attack. United have been in top form in the second half and actually look like the Premier League leaders, more than the leaders themselves. There was still 20 minutes to play and City were so far not getting anywhere, but that could all change if United lose their footing. Rashford seemed to be injured in the 72nd minute of the match, coming off at the nearest point with Mason Greenwood getting ready to come on. Henderson, who had a goal kick, played the ball out to allow the substitution but Greenwood was not really. He came on in the 73rd minute, switching sides with Daniel James, to help push for a victory.

With just under ten minutes remaining, United broke through again with Fernandes, who played a pass to Greenwood, who was on the right flank. He ran into the box and tried to pass further into the box to aim for a third goal. The ball was just short of Daniel James, who was in the middle of the box only for City to regain possession and launch an attack, which according to the commentators, was brilliant but did not result in a goal. United still needed to keep on top of their game here as there was a feeling that City could get a goal back, which would inspire them to get another, then a winner. Solskjaer’s side were the dominant one, despite the City onslaught at times, which was a worry, despite how dire they were.

Nemanja Matic replaced Anthony Martial in the 88th minute, Solskjaer’s second substitution of the match. Martial had a good game and look determined to change his form, which was good to see. He was up for the challenge and did well to help United take the lead, winning a penalty, which was scored in the second minute of the match. There was five minutes to be added on at the end of the half, which would see City looking to get something from this match. Solskjaer made his final substation with Brandon Williams replacing Fernandes in the third minute of added time, which resulted in a defensive shakeup to keep City at bay to close the game down and earn the victory.

United will be thrilled with their performances against City in the league this season, taking four points off them home and away and winning at the Etihad once again. This is what United needed to raise their game towards the end of the season with all to play for yet. United will face AC Milan in the UEFA Europa League round of 16 first leg at Old Trafford on Thursday evening, which is their only home match this month. It is important that United keep going as there are things to play for this season with their form in the Premier League showing improvement, the Emirates FA Cup still to play for, with Leicester City their opposition later this month at the King Power Stadium. The Europa League could be for the taking if United play their cards right.

Manchester United

26 Dean Henderson

Made an important save to deny Mahrez. Was a big hit in goal against City and did not seem to be flustered at all. His pre-assist for Shaw's goal was great thinking. This clean sheet will mean more to him and United. Good to see him get more game time and it was well deserved.

12345

29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Got forward a lot of the time with United pushing to score goals. City were feckless at times, which was great to see. What a run to end though. United have a lot to play for this season. The league title might be out of reach but the improvement is there and there is a challenge happening, no matter how credible.

12345

2 Victor Lindelof

The clean sheet will be a defining point for United. He defended well as City seemed off the boil. Partnered Maguire well despite carrying a lower back injury.

12345

5 Harry Maguire

Had a good match in defence, despite being booked. Showed determination to keep United driving forward.

12345

23 Luke Shaw

What a performance from the left-back. He drove forward the majority of the match, until City were on the attack, in which he defended his ground. Five minutes into the second half, he drove forward with the ball, laid it off to Rashford, who passed back, then scored the second goal of the match, putting United into a good lead. He recently won the Player of the Month award for February and will be seeking to build on that inn his best season at the club.

12345

17 Fred

A better performance for the Brazilian. He had fun against City today, even nutmegging the opposition at times. He ran and kept the midfield ticking, which was good to see.

12345

39 Scott McTominay

Played an important part in the victory over City and was no doubt inspired by his performance at Old Trafford a year ago, in which he scored the second goal from some distance. He did not score today, but his performance was big and needed as United took three points off City at the Etihad again.

12345

21 Daniel James

He was an important player against City and used his pace and ability to get United forward

12345

18 Bruno Fernandes

He's back. Scored his 23rd goal of the season, from the penalty spot, in the second minute of the match after Martial was fouled in the box by Jesus. Created a lot throughout the match as United dominated with City scrappy in both defence and in attack. Good to see him back on track at an important stage of the season.

12345

10 Marcus Rashford

Played a good game for United, using his pace to get the back into the danger areas and get United forward. He had hard luck in the first half but got his assist as United doubled their lead through Shaw in the 50th minute of the match. He got an injury in the 72nd minute and came off with Greenwood replacing him.

12345

9 Anthony Martial

Won a penalty, which was scored by Fernandes in the second minute of the match. He did not get any goals or assists but you could see that he was ready for this match and wanted to change his form. He was not smiling, but he's going in the right direction to make things better, which is good to see.

12345

Substitutes

11 Mason Greenwood

Replaced Rashford 73'. It was a shame to lose Rashford to injury, which will be a worry. He used his pace and attacking threat to get forward, which was good for him. He might well be starting the next match if Rashford is out so he will get his time to shine.

12345

31 Nemanja Matic

Replaced Martial 88'. Came on with two minutes and added time to play. Bolstered the defence and his replacement has the effect is needed - to keep United on top and claiming the victory. Had little time to make more of an impact.

12345

33 Brandon Williams

Replaced Fernandes 90+3'. Came on with two minutes of added time to play. His introduction made Solskjaer's side more defensive, with a City onslaught likely but never really happened. Not really enough time on the pitch to make an impact.

12345

Goals: Bruno Fernandes 2′ penalty, Luke Shaw 40′

Assists: Marcus Rashford 50′

Manchester United: Henderson; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw; Fred, McTominay; James, Fernandes (Williams 90+3′), Rashford (Greenwood 73′); Martial (Matic 88′)

Substitutes Not Used: Grant; Bailly, Telles, Tuanzebe; Diallo, Shoretire

Bookings: Harry Maguire 33′, Luke Shaw 58′, Dean Henderson 60′

Written by John Walker

Confirmed XI: Henderson, Lindelof, McTominay, James, Fernandes, Rashford and Martial start against Manchester City

Manchester United face the biggest match of the Premier League season when they travel to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have drawn the last three matches in a row with the same 0-0 scoreline, which at this stage is a problem as United did not seem to be able to score any goals. Pep Guardiola’s City sit at the top of the Premier League, having a 14 point lead over United, which was not the case in January. Solskjaer’s side will need to find a way to break down the league leaders, which will be problematic as they are in great form, winning all of their last six matches, which will see them push to win the league at some point next month. United need to get a win on the board to save their season.

Last season, Solskjaer did the double over City, winning both at home and away, also beating them in one of the semi-final legs of the Carabao Cup, losing the other and seeing themselves knocked out of the competition, which was the same this season, although it was just a one-legged tie. United are unbeaten in their last ten matches in all competitions, their last seven in the Premier League. However, in the league, the majority of the last seven matches (six) were all draws which is not great form heading into the biggest match of the season for Solskjaer and his United squad. David De Gea looks to be out of action for the foreseeable future, after becoming a father so this will be an even bigger match for Dean Henderson.

Manchester United:

Henderson;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw;

Fred, McTominay;

James, Fernandes, Rashford;

Martial

Substitutes:

Grant; Bailly, Telles, Williams, Tuanzebe; Diallo, Matic, Shoretire; Greenwood

Manchester City:

Ederson;

Cancelo, Stones, Dias, Zinchenko;

De Bruyne, Rodrigo, Gundogan;

Mahrez, Jesus, Sterling

Substitutes:

Steffen; Walker, Laporte, Mendy; Bernardo, Torres, Fernandinho, Foden; Aguero

United and City have met 47 times in the history of the Premier League with this weekend’s Manchester derby the 48th in the English top flight. United have won 23 times, drawing nine times with City winning 15 times. United have scored 68 goals against City, conceding 61. United have been awarded a total of four penalties, scoring three of them with City being awarded one penalty and failing to score it. United have kept 17 clean sheets against City with the Blue side of Manchester keeping 10 clean sheets. United’s players have been shown 81 yellow cards and seven red cards with City’s players shown 106 yellow cards and one red card. City are currently 14 points clear of United and to avoid falling further behind, United need to win this match.

Earlier this season, it was a 0-0 draw between United and City in the first Manchester derby of the Premier League. United met City in the semi-final of the Carabao Cup, losing that match 2-0 at the start of January. Almost a year ago on the 8 March 2020, United and City met at Old Trafford in the Premier League last season. It was the last match that United played in front of supporters at home and they beat City 2-0 with Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay scoring the goals. Last season at the Etihad, played on the 7 December 2019, United were the victors with a 2-1 victory with Marcus Rashford opening the score from the penalty spot in the 23rd minute and Martial doubling the lead six minutes later. Nicolas Otamendi scored a consolation.

Written by John Walker

Predicted XI: [4-3-1-2] Cavani and Rashford up top, Fernandes in behind; Diallo and James to come on in the second half and use their pace to frustrate City?

Manchester United face the biggest match of the Premier League season when they travel to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have drawn the last three matches in a row with the same 0-0 scoreline, which at this stage is a problem as United did not seem to be able to score any goals. Pep Guardiola’s City sit at the top of the Premier League, having a 14 point lead over United, which was not the case in January. Solskjaer’s side will need to find a way to break down the league leaders, which will be problematic as they are in great form, winning all of their last six matches, which will see them push to win the league at some point next month. United need to get a win on the board to save their season.

Last season, Solskjaer did the double over City, winning both at home and away, also beating them in one of the semi-final legs of the Carabao Cup, losing the other and seeing themselves knocked out of the competition, which was the same this season, although it was just a one-legged tie. United are unbeaten in their last ten matches in all competitions, their last seven in the Premier League. However, in the league, the majority of the last seven matches (six) were all draws which is not great form heading into the biggest match of the season for Solskjaer and his United squad. David De Gea looks to be out of action for the foreseeable future, after becoming a father so this will be an even bigger match for Dean Henderson.

How United have faired against Manchester City in the Premier League.

United and City have met 47 times in the history of the Premier League with this weekend’s Manchester derby the 48th in the English top flight. United have won 23 times, drawing nine times with City winning 15 times. United have scored 68 goals against City, conceding 61. United have been awarded a total of four penalties, scoring three of them with City being awarded one penalty and failing to score it. United have kept 17 clean sheets against City with the Blue side of Manchester keeping 10 clean sheets. United’s players have been shown 81 yellow cards and seven red cards with City’s players shown 106 yellow cards and one red card. City are currently 14 points clear of United and to avoid falling further behind, United need to win this match.

Earlier this season, it was a 0-0 draw between United and City in the first Manchester derby of the Premier League. United met City in the semi-final of the Carabao Cup, losing that match 2-0 at the start of January. Almost a year ago on the 8 March 2020, United and City met at Old Trafford in the Premier League last season. It was the last match that United played in front of supporters at home and they beat City 2-0 with Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay scoring the goals. Last season at the Etihad, played on the 7 December 2019, United were the victors with a 2-1 victory with Marcus Rashford opening the score from the penalty spot in the 23rd minute and Martial doubling the lead six minutes later. Nicolas Otamendi scored a consolation.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Manchester City in the Premier League at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday afternoon…

Goalkeeper: Dean Henderson

Dean Henderson has kept nine clean sheets in 14 appearances for United this season, which is a good record for the 23-year-old who is enduring his first season as a United goalkeeper. He is the future of the club and with David De Gea taking some time out after becoming a father this week, Henderson will have ample time to show Solskjaer what he is capable of. Last season at Sheffield United, Henderson faced City twice, since ding three goals in the 2-0 and 1-0 defeats home and away. At United, he will be seeking to have a good appearances against the Premier League leaders with United needing a win to claw back some of City’s 14 point lead at the top of the Premier League table.

Defenders: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire, Luke Shaw

United’s defence will need to continue their current form against City, keeping three clean sheets in their last three matches is a positive, in fact it is the only positive. United got a draw against City earlier in the season and could use that tops for a good result at the Etihad for the second time in two seasons. Last season, United beat City home and away and with a point already gained against City this season, there is some positivity to look towards. Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Luke Shaw should keep their places at fullback with Eric Bailly and Harry Maguire in the centre of defence. Shaw was recently named as United’s player of the month for February and he will be seeking to continue his fine form this season.

Midfield: Fred, Nemanja Matic, Scott McTominay

A midfield three might be better for United against City as they will need to defend well, which is something Nemanja Matic can do well, despite his lack of pace, run the midfield and get balls to the attacking players. Fred has bee criticised over the past week or so for not doing much other than running. His shots on goal are poor and perhaps he needs to go back to the basics and man-mark, which is something he has done well at stages this season. Scott McTominay is having a good season, with five goals scored so far this season and he will be well up for getting a good result against City this weekend, guiding his tea, to a positive result against the Premier League leaders. United need to step up and this match would be the perfect match to do just that.

Attacking Midfield: Bruno Fernandes

Bruno Fernandes has scored 22 goals and 13 assists so far this season and in the last three matches, he has not been able to inspire United to victory, like he has done so many times since he arrived at the club in January 2020. Players are able to have a few off matches, that is all part of football but he will need to find the root cause of his problems and get to the bottom of them. Each and every player on the pitch will need to do the same. United need to get back to winning ways and doing that at the expense if City will be good for the club and inspire them to keep fighting this season. United have a lot of negative supporters right now, who seem to know more than everyone else. Shutting them up this weekend would be great to see. Especially the shouty man.

Forwards: Edinson Cavani, Marcus Rashford

Edinson Cavani is United’s best forward this season, despite the fact he has not yet scored more than seven goals and two assists, which is still a good return as the goals have been coming elsewhere on the pitch. Seeing the Uruguayan run riot at the Etihad, just like Robin van Persie, would be great to see this weekend – fingers crossed. Solskjaer should change the shape United for this match, choosing two forward playing together, which might create more chances for United. Cavani will get more space on the pitch, which could in turn create goalscoring opportunities for other players and even himself. Marcus Rashford should partner him up top, which could see some pace and ability with Fernandes pulling the strings in terms of creation.

Substitutes: Lee Grant; Victor Lindelof, Alex Telles, Brandon Williams, Axel Tuanzebe; Amad Diallo, Donny van de Beek, Shola Shoretire; Mason Greenwood

United can name nine substitutes on the bench in the Premier League, using three of them during the course of the match. Solskjaer will need to get things right, which may be problematic with the likes of Paul Pogba and Juan Mata on the sidelines through injury. David De Gea is also missing, which means Lee Grant will be the substitute goalkeeper for this match. Nathan Bishop might even get a chance on the bench, if Grant is coaching, which is what he has been doing recently. In defence, Victor Lindelof, Alex Telles Brandon Williams and Axel Tuanzebe could be available. In midfield, Amad Diallo, Donny van de Beek and Shola Shoretire could be options with Mason Greenwood the only attacking player on the bench, if Anthony Martial is not fit.

Written by John Walker

Preview: Solskjaer needs to set United up to beat City to get back on track; after three draws, these players need to stand up and be counted

Manchester City -v- Manchester United

Premier League

Etihad Stadium, Manchester

Sunday 7 March 2021, KO 16:30 GMT

Referee: Anthony Taylor Assistants: Gary Beswick, Adam Nunn

Fourth Official: Mike Dean

VAR: Paul Tierney Assistant VAR: Harry Lennard

Manchester United face the biggest match of the Premier League season when they travel to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side have drawn the last three matches in a row with the same 0-0 scoreline, which at this stage is a problem as United did not seem to be able to score any goals. Pep Guardiola’s City sit at the top of the Premier League, having a 14 point lead over United, which was not the case in January. Solskjaer’s side will need to find a way to break down the league leaders, which will be problematic as they are in great form, winning all of their last six matches, which will see them push to win the league at some point next month. United need to get a win on the board to save their season.

Last season, Solskjaer did the double over City, winning both at home and away, also beating them in one of the semi-final legs of the Carabao Cup, losing the other and seeing themselves knocked out of the competition, which was the same this season, although it was just a one-legged tie. United are unbeaten in their last ten matches in all competitions, their last seven in the Premier League. However, in the league, the majority of the last seven matches (six) were all draws which is not great form heading into the biggest match of the season for Solskjaer and his United squad. David De Gea looks to be out of action for the foreseeable future, after becoming a father so this will be an even bigger match for Dean Henderson.

Manchester United: DDDWWD

Crystal Palace 0-0 D, Chelsea 0-0 D, Real Sociedad 0-0 D, Newcastle United 3-1 W, Real Sociedad 4-0 W, West Bromwich Albion 1-1 D

Manchester City: WWWWWW

Wolverhampton Wanderers 4-1 W, West Ham United 2-1 W, Borussia Mönchengladbach 2-0 W, Arsenal 1-0 W, Everton 3-1 W, Tottenham Hotspur 3-0 W

Top Scorers: Manchester United have not scored a single goal in their last three matches; Fernandes and Rashford have 40 goals between them this season.

Manchester United Goals: 22 – Bruno Fernandes, 18 – Marcus Rashford, 7 – Edinson Cavani, Anthony Martial, Scott McTominay, 5 – Daniel James, 4 – Mason Greenwood, Paul Pogba, 2 – Harry Maguire, Juan Mata, Own Goal, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, 1 – Victor Lindelof, Donny van de Beek

United have drawn their last three matches in a row with the same 0-0 scoreline, which is poor. Against Crystal Palace earlier in the week, it seemed that United were devoid of confidence and had no ability to breakdown the home side, which is a major worry heading into the second Manchester derby of the season with United needing a win so badly. Solskjaer’s side have not been defeated in their last ten matches in all competitions and still have their good form away from home, which leave some hope left on the table for a good result to keep their away form record running. Solskjaer will need to get his squad to stand up and be counted against the Premier League leaders.

Manchester City Goals: 13 – Ilkay Gündogan, Raheem Sterling, 11 – Phil Foden, Gabriel Jesus, 8 – Riyad Mahrez, Ferran Torres, 5 – Bernardo Silva, 4 – John Stones, 3 – Kevin De Bruyne, 2 – Sergio Agüero, João Cancelo, Kyle Walker, 1 – Nathan Aké, Liam Delap, Rúben Dias, Fernandinho, Aymeric Laporte, Benjamin Mendy, Rodri

City are the team to beat this season. Back in January, with them playing fewer matches than United, they were languishing outside of the top four with United climbing to the top of the Premier League table. United’s form dropped and it allowed City to open up a 14 point lead over them at the top of the table, which is some comeback for Guardiola’s side. City have won their last six matches, scoring 15 goals, conceding three and keeping three clean sheets, which is the form of a club that is seeking to regain the Premier League title after Liverpool won it last season. United are still in the race but as each draw happens, their chances dip and it seems unlikely, as it did back in January when they topped the league. There has been progress though.

Team News: Four players ruled out for United with three more subject to late fitness tests ahead of the Manchester derby; City have no injury worries with one players close to returning to action at this stage of the season.

Phil Jones (knee), David De Gea (personal), Juan Mata (other) and Paul Pogba (thigh) have all been ruled out of the clash with City this weekend, which is a blow with De Gea being out of action, but he became a father for the first time on Thursday, so he should spend time with his new family. Victor Lindelof (lower back) seems to have suffered a recurrence of his injury, although he was on the bench in the 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace on Wednesday evening. Anthony Martial (knee) was missing earlier in the week and has a 50% chance of recovering in time to face City whereas Donny van de Beek (other) was also missing but he has only a 25% chance of being fit to face City, which leave United with a few problems to solve this weekend.

Nathan Ake was the only player on the sidelines for City heading into the second Manchester derby of the season. The central defender looks to be in contention for the clash at the Etihad Stadium having a 75% chance of being fit in time for the 16:30 kick-off on Sunday. City have a strong team and have done for the past few years with Guardiola doing all the right things to set his team up domestically. United will have a big task on their hands to get a good result against the Noisy Neighbours but it is a possibility. United players will need to be fired up to face their rivals, who are 14 points ahead of them in the Premier League table. Solskjaer will need to get his tactics right and the players will need to stand up and be counted.

Predicted Starting XI: Edinson Cavani and Marcus Rashford to lead the line against City, supported by Bruno Fernandes; Fred, Nemanja Matic and Scott McTominay to play in a three-man midfield?

Solskjaer has few options at this stage of the season with four players ruled out of this match and three more not yet fit to take part, which could change before Sunday come around. Edinson Cavani returned from injury during the week and looks set to keep his place in the team. Solskjaer should perhaps chance the shape of the team, using two forwards instead of one and letting the fullbacks provide the width, to see if it gives them any luck against City, who will be pushing United into their own half to take charge of the clash. A midfield trio of Nemanja Matic, Fred and Scott McTominay is the best we can hope for at this stage with Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire and Luke Shaw in defence with Dean Henderson in goal.

Match Prediction: United and City will meet for the 48th time in the Premier League on Sunday. United have won 23 times, drawing nine and losing 15 but City will be the team to beat this season.

United and City have met 47 times in the history of the Premier League with this weekend’s Manchester derby the 48th in the English top flight. United have won 23 times, drawing nine times with City winning 15 times. United have scored 68 goals against City, conceding 61. United have been awarded a total of four penalties, scoring three of them with City being awarded one penalty and failing to score it. United have kept 17 clean sheets against City with the Blue side of Manchester keeping 10 clean sheets. United’s players have been shown 81 yellow cards and seven red cards with City’s players shown 106 yellow cards and one red card. City are currently 14 points clear of United and to avoid falling further behind, United need to win this match.

Earlier this season, it was a 0-0 draw between United and City in the first Manchester derby of the Premier League. United met City in the semi-final of the Carabao Cup, losing that match 2-0 at the start of January. Almost a year ago on the 8 March 2020, United and City met at Old Trafford in the Premier League last season. It was the last match that United played in front of supporters at home and they beat City 2-0 with Anthony Martial and Scott McTominay scoring the goals. Last season at the Etihad, played on the 7 December 2019, United were the victors with a 2-1 victory with Marcus Rashford opening the score from the penalty spot in the 23rd minute and Martial doubling the lead six minutes later. Nicolas Otamendi scored a consolation.

Manchester City 1-2 Manchester United

Written by John Walker

Review & Ratings: Matic winner kept United's winning run, Fred Man of the Match, Maguire a class act, De Gea getting back to form

Manchester United beat Manchester City 1-0 at the Etihad in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg on Wednesday evening. Nemanja Matic scored the only goal of the game, was booked early in the second half then sent off 25 minutes later. United had improved from the first leg but it was not enough as they ended up losing 3-2 on aggregate. United will now concentrate on Wolverhampton Wanderers, facing them for the third time in a month on Saturday.

City started the game well, pressing United from the very start, having a few chances to open the scoring with David De Gea making a string of good saved to deny the noisy neighbours. United pressed forward at times and in the 35th minute of the match, they took the lead through Nemanja Matic. Fred took a free-kick which was cleared with Matic getting the ball beating Claudio Bravo at the near post.

Seven minutes after United’s goal, Raheem Sterling had the ball in the net after Kevin De Bruyne played the ball across the face of the goal with Sterling beating De Gea from close-range. However, despite looking onside initially, a short VAR review took place with the offside decision. It was good for United, who needed another goal to make it a 3-3 draw on aggregate. Matic was sent off in the 76th minute, a second yellow card.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

The Spanish number one had a good game against City, making quite a few good saves to deny City from scoring. It was the De Gea of old. Perhaps shining through at the right time with United seeking to make this season much better.

12345

2 Victor Lindelof

Getting Bailly back in the team cannot come fast enough. Lindelof seemed too nervous at times and shaky at others. Not what any defence needs. Improvement is needed if he wants to keep his place in the starting XI.

12345

5 Harry Maguire

I think this was Maguire's best match for United. Sunday's victory much have shown him what United were capable of, even plagued by injuries. He was commanding, like any leader should be. Should be partnered by Bailly though to see how the duo do together.

12345

23 Luke Shaw

Played on the left of a back three. Not a role he has played before. His performance was alright, considering.

12345

29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

The right-back was not at his best at the start of the game but soon found his feet. He was booked in added time for a bad tackle.

12345

17 Fred

The Brazilian was the engine of this team, as he has been recently. He ran his socks off and tried to do all he could to in order to get a victory in this match and reach the final at Wembley.

12345

31 Nemanja Matic

The Serbian midfielder scored the only goal of the game against City, was booked at the start of the second half then found himself sent off late in the second half for a second booking.

12345

33 Brandon Williams

Gave Walker some problems at times. A good player to have in this team. He's definitely the main left-back at the club when United play four at the back.

12345

14 Jesse Lingard

Poor. Seemed to be the target of shouting from the gaffer. When Fernandes is at the club and playing, Lingard will be seeing much of his football either from that stands or on the television at home.

12345

11 Mason Greenwood

The 18-year-old had little impact against City but went off with a slight injury at half time.

12345

9 Anthony Martial

Still not convinced that he's a striker. He's a winger. I don't care what Martial FC say, they are mostly clueless. He needs to do so much more otherwise, he's going to find himself occupying a position on the bench as Rashford is better than him on the left. He put plenty of work into his game though, despite the low output.

12345

Substitutes

21 Daniel James

Replaced Greenwood 46'. He's not a game changer, yet. He used his pace to help take the game to City but there was no real end product. He's been relied upon too much this season and needs a break. The winter break might just do that after this weekends matches.

12345

Andreas Pereira

Replaced Lingard 65'. The Belgian-born Brazilian played his part in the game but in terms of bringing something to the table, he fell short. His mind may have been to get United another goal but his ability is still playing catchup.

12345

8 Juan Mata

Replaced Shaw 79'. Came on too late to be that decisive player in this match. City had their backs to the wall and their squad quality helped to get the better of United, despite losing.

12345

Goals: Nemanja Matic 35′

Assists: N/A

Manchester United: De Gea; Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw (Mata 79′); Wan-Bissaka, Fred, Matic, Williams; Lingard (Pereira 65′); Greenwood (James 46′), Martial

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Bailly, Jones, Dalot

Bookings: Rodri 57′, Nicolas Otamendi 87′; Nemanja Matic 51′, 76′ s/o, Aaron Wan-Bissaka 90+4′

Confirmed Starting XI: Martial and Greenwood lead the line against City; three at the back again for United – high press incoming?

Manchester United will travel across the city to face rivals Manchester City at the Etihad in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg on Wednesday evening. After losing 3-1 at Old Trafford at the start of the month Ole Gunnar Solskjaer side will have a lot to do in order to knock Pep Guardiola’s side out of the competition. United will need to score twice to level the tie on aggregate.

United beat City at the Etihad back in December with a 2-1 victory, something which Guardiola’s team were not ready for. After seeing this United side dominate, albeit against Tranmere, if the same formation and mentality were applied in this game, United could get a result away from home with could put them into the final but it will need to be a big result with United needing to aim for a clean sheet, which will be a big task.

United have announced the singing of Bruno Fernandes who is currently on his way to Manchester for a medical, however, the signing came too late for this evening’s match and he will most likely made his debut at Old Trafford on Saturday when United welcome Wolverhampton Wanderers to the Theatre of Dreams in the Premier League. United still have more to do in order to strengthen the team but creativity should improve with this new signing.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw;

Wan-Bissaka, Fred, Matic, Williams;

Lingard;

Greenwood, Martial

Substitutes:

Romero; Bailly, Jones, Dalot; Mata, Pereira, James

Manchester City:

Bravo;

Walker, Rodrigo, Otamendi, Cancelo;

De Bruyne, Gündogan, B. Silva;

Mahrez, Aguero, Sterling

Substitutes:

Ederson; Stones, Zinchenko, Garcia; D. Silva, Foden; Jesus

United and City have played a total of 180 matches in this history of both clubs with the first match being played in 1891. United have won 74 times, drawn 52 times and lost 54 times. United lost in their last meeting at the start of the month, a 3-1 defeat for United with Marcus Rashford scoring for United when they were 3-0 down. City’s goals came from Bernardo Silva, Riyad Mahrez, and an Andreas Pereira own goal.

At the start of December 2019, United met City at the Etihad in the Premier League, winning 2-1 after Marcus Rashford scored a penalty in the 23rd minute of the match with Anthony Martial doubling the lead six minutes later. A late consolation from Nicolás Otamendi spoiled the party a little with United not keeping a clean sheet. This will be the third Manchester derby this season, with one more to come.

How United could look in the Carabao Cup against City; 3-4-3 Lindelof, Bailly and Maguire in defence, Greenwood, Martial and James in attack?

Manchester United will face Manchester City in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg at the Etihad on Wednesday. This will be a big game for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer as he looks to find a way for his team to beat Pep Guardiola’s City after their 3-1 defeat at Old Trafford at the start of the month. The 6-0 Emirates FA Cup victory over Tranmere Rovers on Sunday could well have boosted the confidence of the squad and given them a chance total on City with a different formation.

United would need to win this match by three clear goals if they were to make it to the Carabao Cup final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday 1 March 2020, however, at least 90 minutes of football stands in the way of achieving that feat, not to mention a City team in resurgent form, scoring 20 goals and conceding just five goals in the past six matches, winning five and drawing once. It is form that United can only dream about.

Here is my predicted starting XI to face Manchester City in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg at the Etihad on Wednesday evening…

Goalkeeper: David De Gea

The Spanish goalkeeper was rested for the 6-0 FA Cup victory over Tranmere on Sunday meaning he should be fit to face City for the second time this month. De Gea has not been in the best of form this season but he has made some impressive saves. If the players and the supporters stick by him like they did at the start of his United career, it could well pay off again with him raising his form. Of course, having the best side available would be helpful along with the squad being strengthened significantly, which should be a plan this month with injuries to key players in the squad for long spells of the season.

Defenders: Victor Lindelof, Eric Bailly, Harry Maguire

Three at the back worked against Tranmere. Maybe it was because United were playing against a team struggling in League One – perhaps it was because United were able to play to a higher tempo further up the pitch. That formation could have been a test by Solskjaer to find a way of coming back from behind to beat City. Remember Paris in March? It could work. I expect both Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire to keep their places in defence but Eric Bailly should be tested against City, which might add something to the defence and the rest of the team. There is a period of rest coming up too, giving these players a significant break, of around two weeks before playing again.

Midfield: Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Nemanja Matic, Fred, Brandon Williams

Four across the midfield worked on Sunday and it has worked for other clubs in the Premier League and beyond. Diogo Dalot played well against Tranmere but Aaron Wan-Bissaka should be ahead of him after a rest this weekend with Brandon Williams replacing Luke Shaw on the left side. Fred should start ahead of Andreas Pereira with Nemanja Matic keeping his starting place after playing 45 minutes in the FA Cup. This is the best United has in this area at this moment in time, unless something magical happens before kick off on Wednesday, which is unlikely. United will miss the likes of Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay, which could have made this area even stronger for this match.

Forwards: Mason Greenwood, Anthony Martial, Daniel James

The forward three can be played in so may ways. A straight three at the front, two forward with one behind them, one forward with two behind; this can interchange throughout the match, which might help in getting the better of United’s noisy neighbours. With Marcus Rashford out of action and a lack of attacking players to choose from, Anthony Martial should be the main striker – he did well against Tranmere on Sunday. Mason Greenwood should keep his place in the team also as he adds something to the team. Daniel James was rested against Tranmere, meaning he should be ready to face City, although Jesse Lingard could keep his place in the team. James could do something on the left, as he did at the start of the season. Lingard from the bench could be good for United, if his confidence from his performance on Sunday continues into Wednesday.

Substitutes: Sergio Romero; Phil Jones, Diogo Dalot, Luke Shaw; Jesse Lingard, Andreas Pereira, Angel Gomes

United will need players on the bench who can come on and do a job should they be required. Sergio Romero will move to the bench for this game after keeping another clean sheet on Sunday. Defensively, Phil Jones, Diogo Dalot and Luke Shaw could also add something, should they be needed. Both Dalot and Shaw got forward a lot of the time against Tranmere and they could offer that against City too. Jesse Lingard, Andreas Pereira and Angel Gomes, if chosen in the squad could all provide in the midfield/attacking areas too, should they too be needed. Of course, Tahith Chong could make the bench ahead of Gomes, just like he did in Sunday’s victory over Tranmere in the FA Cup.

Preview: Carabao Cup final place at stake if United can beat City by three clear goals; resurgent City to avoid defeat?

Manchester City -v- Manchester United

Carabao Cup

Etihad Stadium, Manchester

Wednesday 29 January 2020, KO 19:45 GMT

Referee: Andre Marriner Assistants: Simon Long, Richard West Fourth Official: Peter Bankes

Manchester United will travel across the city to face rivals Manchester City at the Etihad in the Carabao Cup semi-final second leg on Wednesday evening. After losing 3-1 at Old Trafford at the start of the month Ole Gunnar Solskjaer side will have a lot to do in order to knock Pep Guardiola’s side out of the competition. United will need to score twice to level the tie on aggregate.

United beat City at the Etihad back in December with a 2-1 victory, something which Guardiola’s team were not ready for. After seeing this United side dominate, albeit against Tranmere, if the same formation and mentality were applied in this game, United could get a result away from home with could put them into the final but it will need to be a big result with United needing to aim for a clean sheet, which will be a big task.

United need to strengthen their squad with days left before the closure of the January transfer window and nothing seemingly happening although rumours still link United to Bruno Fernandes with other reports suggesting that the club is seeking a new striker in this transfer window – too little too late? However, with little seeming to materialise, it could be that United will continue with what they have, which is not enough.

Form: City in much better form than United, however, the belief from the victory over Tranmere could inspire United to achieve what may seem the impossible against City.

Manchester United: WLLWWL

Tranmere Rovers 6-0 W, Burnley 2-0 L, Liverpool 2-0 L, Wolverhampton Wanderers 1-0 W, Norwich City 4-0 W, Manchester City 3-1 L

Manchester City: WWDWWW

Fulham 4-0 W, Sheffield United 1-0 W, Crystal Palace 2-2 D, Aston Villa 6-1 W, Manchester United 3-1 W, Port Vale 4-1 W

Top Scorers: City have scored more goals than United this season but despite a lack of creativity, United have not done all that badly.

Manchester United Goals: 19 – Marcus Rashford, 12 – Anthony Martial, 10 – Mason Greenwood, 3 – Daniel James, Scott McTominay, 2 – Own Goal, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, 1 – Diogo Dalot, Phil Jones, Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire, Andreas Pereira, Brandon Williams, Ashley Young

This season has seen United taking a step or two forward, then moving back at least two steps soon after. There is little consistency in the team after being beaten 2-0 by both Liverpool and Burnley recently. Un iced hit back and suck Tranmere for six in the fourth round of the Emirates FA Cup on Sunday, gaining themselves some confidence ready for the second leg of the Carabao Cup semi-final against City on Wednesday.

Manchester City Goals: 21 – Sergio Agüero, 20 – Raheem Sterling, 16 – Gabriel Jesus, 9 – Riyad Mahrez, 7 – Kevin De Bruyne, Bernardo Silva, 5 – Ilkay Gündogan, 3 – Phil Foden, Nicolás Otamendi, David Silva, 2 – Rodri, 1 – João Cancelo, Taylor Harwood-Bellis, Kyle Walker, Oleksandr Zinchenko

City may not be the runaway leaders in the Premier League this season, like they once were but they are still a team in form which will take a lot to beat them. A 3-1 victory at Old Trafford at the start of the month gave United a slight lifeline to remain in this competition with a place in the Carabao Cup final at stake. However, winning by three clear goals will be tough at the Etihad, even though United won 2-1 there last month.

Team News: Injuries still problematic for United with four key players on the sidelines for the foreseeable future. City have players out of action but the impact, for them, has been small.

United will be without Scott McTominay (knee), Axel Tuanzebe (thigh), Paul Pogba (ankle/foot), Marcos Rojo (calf/shin/heel), and Marcus Rashford (lower back) for this match. Tim Fosu-Mensah is lacking match fitness so might be included in the squad, albeit on the bench. Solskjaer may need to use the same players from Sunday’s match. He did manage to rest David De Gea, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, and Daniel James.

City will definitely be without Leroy Sane (knee), and could see the likes of Riyad Mahrez (knock) and Joao Cancelo (ankle/foot) as doubts. However, Aymeric Laporte (fatigue) has only just recovered from four to five months on the sidelines through injury, so it is not yet known when he will be available to ply for City again. Guardiola’s side have few injury concerns that will weaken the squad – unlike United.

Predicted Starting XI: The 3-4-3 formation could have been a test ahead of the City match with United dominating with high pressing football – could it work against City?

Solskjaer used a formation with three at the back against Tranmere which was look at as strange, being that United were playing against a team struggling in League One. However, it could have been a test ahead of utilising a similar formation against City on Wednesday. De Gea, Wan-Bissaka, and James, all rested at the weekend could start with Bailly coming back into the fold. It might work for United.

Match Prediction: City may be twenty victories behind United but over the past decade, defeats come more often than victories; 13 defeats, 11 victories and three draws – City on top!

United and City have played a total of 180 matches in this history of both clubs with the first match being played in 1891. United have won 74 times, drawn 52 times and lost 54 times. United lost in their last meeting at the start of the month, a 3-1 defeat for United with Marcus Rashford scoring for United when they were 3-0 down. City’s goals came from Bernardo Silva, Riyad Mahrez, and an Andreas Pereira own goal.

At the start of December 2019, United met City at the Etihad in the Premier League, winning 2-1 after Marcus Rashford scored a penalty in the 23rd minute of the match with Anthony Martial doubling the lead six minutes later. A late consolation from Nicolás Otamendi spoiled the party a little with United not keeping a clean sheet. This will be the third Manchester derby this season, with one more to come.

Manchester City 0-3 Manchester United

Review & Ratings: Rashford and Martial sink City at the Etihad; Wan-Bissaka, McTominay, Fred and Lingard dug deep in hard-fought victory

Manchester United beat Manchester City 2-1 at the Etihad in the Premier League on Saturday evening. Marcus Rashford opened the scoring from the penalty spot in the 23rd minute after being fouled inside the box with the penalty awarded by VAR. Anthony Martial doubled United’s lead six minutes later, shocking the home side. United have ended a great week and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be proud.

It was a great start for United, who seemed to throw everything they had at City. Marcus Rashford won a penalty in the 23rd minute of the match after Bernardo Silva fouled him in the box. The referee did not award the penalty, with City on the attack but after a break in the game, VAR gave the penalty with the United forward finding the back of the net easily. He could have scored twice in quick succession after the penalty.

Six minutes later, United were 2-0 up after Anthony Martial found the back of the net. United were running riot at the Etihad. United’s attacking players were too much for City’s defence, who looked like they needed yet more investment. Daniel James got the assist as the Frenchman beat Ederson at the near post, putting United 2-0 up, unlucky that they had not scored more. City will be hurting, which makes it feel so much better.

City got themselves back into the game in the 85th minute of the match after Nicolas Otamendi scored a bullet header from Riyadh Mahrez’s cross into the box to get one back for City, who just did not do enough to get the better of United throughout the match. It was a pretty determined second half from City, who now have a massive chase on their hands to retain the Premier League title this season.

Manchester United

1 David De Gea

City seemed out of the game, despite creating lots of chances but messing them up. De Gea made one great save to deny David Silva. It was a frought ten minutes (including added time) after Nicolas Otamendi got one back for City.

12345

29 Aaron Wan-Bissaka

The right-back had a great game against City and really put his all into his position to help United get the result they needed and a result City did not want. Wan-Bissaka dealt with Raheem Sterling to the best of his abilities.

12345

2 Victor Lindelof

I thought the Swede played well in the first half but seemed lose some momentum in the second half when City started their onslaught t try and change the scoreline. He held well though but this could be a weakness for United moving forward.

12345

5 Harry Maguire

The England defender seemed to raise his game ever so slightly against City, which was needed against the reigning champions, who mayc not be champions for long.

12345

23 Luke Shaw

It was a good game for Shaw. His first Premier League start since August and what a game to come back into the starting XI. He showed a massive amount of commitment and it was a shame he had to come off at the end.

12345

39 Scott McTominay

Glad to have him back at full speed. His energy, determination and hunger is a great thing for his teammates to see. He may not be gifted with world class ability but he is a player that United need in the squad. City will have hated coming up against him.

12345

17 Fred

The Brazilian midfielder has raised his game on a match by match basis, getting better every time. He put so much of his ability into this match and will cause problems for Paul Pogba going forward, unless the Frenchman plays forther forward. Got his with a few lighters from the scummy City fans and seemed to have a monkey chant thrown at him. He did not react though, which will anny the neanderthal aiming to abuse him.

12345

21 Daniel James

What a game for the Welshman. Another assist which is showing that he's a much better player, in terms of impact, ability that Alecis Sanchez, who just could not be bothered in his time at United putting money over everything else. James will only get better and he's given a lot this season and will have surprised his teammates and his opposition.

12345

14 Jesse Lingard

The first 30 minutes of the match was the best for Lingard against City. He has improved recently, and boy did he need to. That goal in Kazakhstan could have been the turning point for him. City would have preferred him to be lacklustre.

12345

10 Marcus Rashford

I feel sorry for those that did not rate Rashford. They always seem to hide, or for some, adopt a new opinion forgetting what they previously had said. It is what you get with a semi-fickle fan base. Scored the penalty to put United ahead but could have bagged another two goals before Martial doubled United's lead.

12345

9 Anthony Martial

The Frenchman returned from injury and looked pretty sharp, which is needed from the player leading the line.

12345

Substitutes

Andreas Pereira

Replaced Martial 74'. Got booked almost as soon as he came on, taking Raheem Sterling out. Played his part in the victory.

12345

18 Ashley Young

Replaced Shaw 88'. Came on late, did what he needed. Not enough time to have an impact.

12345

38 Axel Tuanzebe

Replaced Lingard 89'. Came on at the death with stoppage time to play. Should be given more time to impress this month. Will be happy with the result.

12345

Goals: Nicolas Otamendi 85′; Marcus Rashford 23′ (pen), Anthony Martial 29′

Assists: Riyadh Mahrez 85′; Daniel James 29′

Manchester United: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw (Young 88′); McTominay, Fred; James, Lingard (Tuanzebe 89′), Rashford; Martial (Pereira 74′)

Substitutes Not Used: Romero; Williams; Mata; Greenwood

Bookings: Bernardo Silva 22′, Kevin De Bruyne 79′, Kyle Walker 90+4′; David De Gea 54′, Andreas Pereira 74′

Confirmed Starting XI: Martial starts against City; James, Lingard and Rashford support; Tuanzebe on the bench

Manchester United have travelled to the Etihad Stadium to face Manchester City in the Premier League this evening. After beating Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford on Wednesday evening, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United jumped to to sixth place in the Premier League and are 11 points adrift of Pep Guardiola’s City and a further 11 points short of league leaders Liverpool.

The victory over Spurs gave United something to boost their confidence after a run of three matches without a victory and two Premier League draws against Sheffield United and Aston Villa, teams which were promoted from the Championship last season. It was not a good pair of results for United. Back to winning ways though, Solskjaer and United will be boosted and should take a game to City, who are not as good as they might think.

Manchester United:

De Gea;

Wan-Bissaka, Lindelof, Maguire, Shaw;

McTominay, Fred;

James, Lingard, Rashford;

Martial

Substitutes:

Romero; Young, Tuanzebe, Williams; Mata, Pereira; Greenwood

Manchester City:

Ederson;

Walker, Stones, Fernandinho, Angel;

De Bruyne, Rodri, D. Silva;

B. Silva, Jesus, Sterling

Substitutes:

Bravo; Mendy, Cancelo, Otamendi; Gundogan, Mahrez, Foden

United and Manchester City have played 178 times in the history of both clubs. United has won 73 times, drawing 52 times and losing 53 times. The first match was played in 1891; a 5-1 victory for Newton Heath (United) in the FA Cup. United have not beaten City since the 2017/18 season, which incidentially came in this fixture, a 3-2 victory at the Etihad with Paul Pogba inspiring United with two quick goals coming from 2-0 down.

Last season, United lost both home and away to City; 3-1 at the Etihad and 2-0 at Old Trafford. This season, City are not as good as they once were and with problems in defence, it could be a match for United to take advantage. After beating Spurs on Wednesday evening, Solskjaer’s side should be up for the challenge of beating City. However, some will worry more about Liverpool winning the Premier League if this happens.

copyright: JW