Manchester Derby: The battle for fourth place

The weekend’s most entertaining clash takes place in Manchester where the two sides will face off at the City of Manchester Stadium in a 9.30 pm kick off (IST). Over the seasons the rivalry has got even more profound as there hasn’t been much to separate these sides. However, the rivalry has stayed vicious and the fans have been passionate.

The head to head between the two read as 71 wins for Manchester United against Manchester City’s 49, going into the 171 derby clash on Sunday. Nonetheless, City has won four of the last six league derbies, with the last one being a draw at Old Trafford in the reverse fixture (of the season) last October.

Manchester City are high on confidence having proceeded to the quarter finals of the Champions league the past week, defeating Dynamo Kyiv at an aggregate score of 3-1.

Manchester United was kicked out of the Europa league by their arch-rivals Liverpool the past week. They drew the second leg with a goal each but were dumped out on an aggregate score of 3-1.

This clash is important both sides as it is a battle for fourth place. With only 8 games left after this clash both teams will be looking to get the three points.

Manchester City will be without Captain Vincent Komapny as he encountered a calf injury in the mid-week clash against Dynamo Kyiv. It will be important for the likes of Demichelis and Zabaleta to step up their game in order they can stop United from getting forward.

Sergio Aguero will be the player to watch out for from the City side, he has a prolific record against the Red Devils in City colours. He has scored 7 goals against Manchester United in the past; however he hasn’t scored in the last six games giving the Red Devils some breathing space.

Joe hart needs to step up to the occasion, with a depleted back four it is important he performs well. He is currently the leading goalkeeper with highest number of clean sheets this season with 13, one better off than Petr Cech (Arsenal) and Kasper Schmeichel (Leicester City) at 12.

Manchetser United will be looking to secure a top four finish in order they can make this a successful season, and make sure LVG stays on as manager. Despite still being part of the FA Cup, a European qualifying spot would be priority for the Red Devil's of Manchester.

The attacking options for Manchester United seem to bolster their confidence. Wayne Rooney has scored 18 goals and Anthony Martial 16 goals in all competitions for Manchester United this season. Wayne Rooney currently holds the record with 8 derby goals and will look to increase the gap over Aguero who is one goal short of the record having played just the half the number of games as compared to Rooney (16 games). Manchester United have another attacking option with Marcus Rashford, the young 18 year old who has scored 4 goals in just 7appearances for the first team, making an instant impact from his debut game.

We look forward to an entertaining contest in the blue half of Manchester this evening; however the Red half would like to prove to the rest of the world that Manchester is still Red! The contest for 4th place will intensify the game and put more pressure on both sides, let’s see which side emerges victorious in this blazing clash.