Competition: Premier League – Manchester United vs. Manchester City
Venue: Old Trafford – Saturday, September 10 – 12:30 BST (07:30 ET)
Match Odds: Man Utd 13/10 – Draw 9/4 – Man City 11/5
Both sides have won all three of their opening Premier League games so far and will know that victory in this one will give them a huge boost in the title race, even if we are only a month into the season.
United will fancy their chances as the home side. They had lost four Manchester derbies in a row but have now gone unbeaten through the last three, keeping clean sheets in both of last year’s clashes.Embed from Getty Images
Mourinho knows he is under pressure here. His long-standing rivalry with Pep Guardiola will reignite and with United slight favourites, they will need to take the game to their local rivals.
City are looking to secure a 50th Manchester derby win in all competitions – United have won 70 – but will have to do so without Sergio Aguero. The striker is suspended after being charged with violent conduct for an elbow last time out.
Guardiola has the edge over Mourinho based on previous meetings between the two, and those inside the City camp will be confident the Spaniard can guide them to what would be an enormous win at Old Trafford.Embed from Getty Images
Guardiola could win his fourth-consecutive league game with a new club for the first time in his career here, having not managed to do so with Barcelona B, Barcelona or Bayern Munich.
The Spanish tactician is the first City manager to win his first five games in charge of the club, while Mourinho is the first to win his opening four games in charge of Manchester United. They are two of the greatest managers on the planet and have some of the best players in world football at their disposal.
You don’t want to miss this.Embed from Getty Images
The international break wasn’t kind to Jose Mourinho, with Luke Shaw and Henrikh Mkhitaryan both returning with knocks, so they are doubts. Bastian Schweinsteiger remains out of the first-team picture at the club. Marcos Rojo and Sergio Romero are not fit enough to play here, while Antonio Valencia is a doubt due to the fact that he’ll have only returned back from South America 24 hours before kickoff.
Manchester City are without their talisman, with Sergio Aguero suspended for three games for an elbow in the win over West Ham last time out, so Kelechi Iheanacho could start up top. Vincent Kompany remains a doubt, while Leroy Sane and Ilkay Gundogan are available to make their debuts but may not be fit enough to play.
Manchester United’s form: W/W/W
Manchester City’s form: W/W/W
Key Stat: Nemesis – Jose Mourinho has only won three of his 16 meetings against Pep Guardiola during their managerial careers.
Key Player: Zlatan Ibrahimovic – The United superstar has started life in the Premier League well, firing three goals in three games so far. He loves big occasions and will be relishing the chance of facing City on Saturday. With Aguero suspended, Zlatan will look to take centre stage in the biggest Manchester Derby in history.Embed from Getty Images
Manchester United 1-1 Manchester City – A game of this magnitude tends to lead to nervous and close-fought battles, with neither side wanting to make a mistake. United will look to win the game as the home side, but City are setup to counter dangerously and will be ready to exploit any gaps in the United backline. Ultimately, both will expect to score, but it’s impossible to split the sides. Draw.