manchester united

Manchester United Predicted Lineup vs Manchester City: A United Point Of View

louis van gaal

Manchester United are going into this derby with a wealth of confidence from their hard-fought 1-1 draw with Chelsea, knowing that this is an opportune time to hurt City, who are going through a slump. The return of most of United’s players, from injury or from suspension, have added to United’s self-assurance. City may have won just five of their last six Manchester derbies in the Premier league, but United are the favourites to win this time, with Wayne Rooney’s injury scare being resolved, as he was seen training yesterday.

The impending return of Phil Jones and Radamel Falcao lend the team solidity, which will help them in the clash with City. United will find no better way to verify their top-4 credentials than by beating Manchester City. They have been taken apart by City in the past few encounters, with the last encounter at the Etihad ending 4-1 in favour of City, with a brace by Sergio Aguero and goals from Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri. Louis van Gaal has a stellar record in derby matches, and United are looking much stronger than they were looking at the beginning of the season. They are linking up better, but have yet to improve while off the ball, as they find it difficult to recover the ball fast from the opposition. Against Chelsea, they were able to escape against the lighter players in their attacking midfield by tackling and blocking them, but they will not be able to escape against a midfield of Fernandinho or Yaya Toure or Fernando.

For United, on the pitch, Angel di Maria will have to break free from Fernandinho or Fernando, who will be keeping him under lock and key. Wayne Rooney will be United’s beacon of light, and his record against Manchester City is one to fear. He will make a huge difference, as with him on the pitch, City’s strength can be matched. The possible return of Phil Jones could shore up United’s defence, and Ander Herrera will have to get the ball and move the ball forward in midfield. Daley Blind will have to screen the defence, and he will have to have a better game than he did against Chelsea last weekend, as Michael Carrick is clawing at his heels for the same place in midfield and is taller than Blind, meaning that he is more powerful in the air. Robin van Persie is going through an indifferent phase, and he will have to break out by scoring or assisting, as Wayne Rooney is more than capable of usurping his place in the attack, with Juan Mata or Adnan Januzaj taking over the place left behind in midfield.

United will look to continue their good run by derailing their noisy neighbours’ campaign and pushing themselves back up the points table, killing two birds with one stone. City will not cower in a corner, but will look to get back on their feet and come out, all guns blazing, after a poor week, which is why United cannot take their opponents for granted and have to stay wary. Both sides will look for a win and a high-scoring clash is on the cards.

Predicted line-up:

Manchester City (4-4-2): Joe Hart – Pablo Zabaleta, Vincent Kompany, Eliaquim Mangala, Aleksandar Kolarov – James Milner, Yaya Toure, Fernando, Samir Nasri – Edin Dzeko, Sergio Aguero

Manchester United (4-4-2 diamond): David de Gea – Rafael, Chris Smalling, Marcos Rojo, Luke Shaw – Daley Blind, Ander Herrera, Angel di Maria, Wayne Rooney – Robin van Persie, Radamel Falcao

Manchester United XI - Football tactics and formations