Football News

The most anticipated derby

Created on 08 Dec., 2012 9:28 AM GMT

Manchester United and Manchester City will both enter their highly anticipated derby on Sunday on the back of underwhelming results.

United fell to a 1-0 home loss to Romanian outfit CFR Cluj in mid-week, while City finished bottom of their group in Europe courtesy of a 1-0 reverse away to Borussia Dortmund.

Roberto Mancini's men will no doubt be ropable their star-studded squad could not even get them into the Europa League, while United - despite their loss not costing them a last-16 spot - will be looking to bounce back from being beaten in their own backyard by a relative minnow.

And despite sitting in the top two spots on the league table, both sides have had some unusual results of late.

United's form line reads: loss to Norwich, loss to Galatasaray (Champions League), come-from-behind win over QPR, narrow win over West Ham, and another come-from-behind win over Reading.

That both QPR and Reading led against United is a sign their defence is more than capable of being beaten - something that City has shored up at the expense of goals.

In a squad stacked with star goalscorers, City failed to threaten against Chelsea in a stalemate, took 69 minutes to break down Wigan's defence, only scored from the spot against Everton, and failed to trouble the scorers against Dortmund.

So it leaves the two clubs with everything to play for, let alone English Premier League points, but there is clearly some momentum up for grabs for the side that performs the better at the Etihad Stadium.

City should get back Gael Clichy (ankle) and Jack Rodwell (hamstring) for the all-important derby, while United have revealed defender Nemanja Vidic (knee) will not make his long-awaited comeback at the weekend.

Winger Antonio Valencia (thigh) could return, though, while Nani (hamstring), Anderson (hamstring) and Shinji Kagawa (knee) are already ruled out.

City will be missing Micah Richards (knee), Alexander Kolarov (groin), James Milner (hamstring), while midfielder David Silva remains in doubt due to a hamstring complaint.

City took all six league points on offer against United last season on their way to clinching the title, but United were triumphant 3-2 at Eastlands in the FA Cup third round in January.

Mancini's side won their recent league clash there 1-0, with Vincent Kompany's towering header the difference in what turned out to be a defining victory.

Loading ...