Man City host Man Utd at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday. City are in imperious form and close to regaining their title. United are playing some dire stuff at the moment with many players looking tired or burn out and a wrath of recent draws ending any vague hopes of catching City. The hosts will want to end Man Utd’s 21 game unbeaten away run whilst United will hope to inflict a first defeat on City in 29 matches.
Man City Form
After Tuesday’s win against Wolves, Man City are six wins from guaranteeing the league title. They have now won 21 games in a row across all competitions and are up to 28 matches without defeat. That run has been based on a rock solid defence that has kept 19 clean sheets in their streak without defeat. Their recent home record has seen 15 wins and two draws from their last 17 with just five goals leaked since a defeat to Leicester in September.
Recent wins including thrashing Liverpool 4-1 t Anfield, beating Spurs 3-0 at home and a 2-0 away victory in the Champions League round of 16 away at Borussia Monchengladach.
Man Utd Team News
City have been rotating their side heavily in recent matches but were close to “full strength” against Wolves and only a couple of alternations are expected in the derby. Nathan Ake is still out injured but everyone else is available.
Two changes to their lineup are expected with John Stones replacing Aymeric Laporte alongside Ruben Dias and Phil Foden taking the place of Gabriel Jesus with a false nine being used against United.
Man Utd Motivation
Winning a 22nd match in a row is a big motivation for the side. City only need six wins from their last 11 matches to take the title so a draw here would not be a bad result at all. At home, with their confidence this high, City are expected to not settle for a point and try to beat Man Utd.
Man Utd Form
United have fallen away badly in the title race having drawn five of their last seven league matches. They have lost just one of their last 17 in all competitions but are struggling to actually win games (six of their last ten ended level in 90 minutes across all competitions).
The side drew 0-0 at Crystal Palace in a very poor performance on Wednesday where they went from around the 25th to the 70th minutes without having a shot. That result extended their unbeaten away league record to 21 matches but they’ve drawn six of their last eight matches having previously won 10 on the bounce on their travels.
Man Utd Team News
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will recall Scott McTominay in midfield with Nemanja Matic expected to drop out. Edinson Cavani started against Palace but looked a little rusty. He should start again in this game with Anthony Martial nursing a slight knee injury. He missed the Palace match, giving United very few options to change the game.
Paul Pogba is still out injured in midfield whilst Victor Lindelof should return to partner Harry Maguire in central defence. David De Gea is also set for a recall in goal after Dean Henderson got a start against Palace.
Man Utd Motivation
United’s title hopes are practically over. A victory would be great for bragging rights in this derby but realistically, Solskjaer would take a draw in a heartbeat and focus on keeping a place in the top two and securing Champions League qualification.
Expect the very same big game setup as we saw vs Chelsea a week ago with two holding midfielders and Bruno Fernandes expected to release the speedy front players on counter attacks.
City have won 21 matches in a row (28 unbeaten – W25, D3)
City have kept 19 clean sheets in their last 28 matches
Man City have won 15 PL matches in a row, 10 of them to zero
Man Utd have drawn 6 of their last 10 matches in 90 minutes
United have drawn 5 of their last 7 PL matches
United are 21 away PL matches unbeaten (W13, D8)
Man Utd have failed to score in 4 of their last 6 away PL matches
Man Utd have drawn 4 of their 7 matches against the “big 6” this season
Man Utd have scored 1 goal in 7 matches against the “big 6” this season
In these big matches, Man Utd have a very poor record but they are capable of eking out a 0-0 draw. However, City winning this match to zero and ending United’s run without an away defeat is probably the more likely outcome. If you expect a low scoring match, either 0-0 or 1-0 either way then going under 1.5 goals could be a good alternative.