Manchester United will welcome cross-town rivals Manchester City in a mouth-watering Premier League derby on Sunday.
The lead-up to the derby has been excellent for the Red Devils, who have picked up three victories out of their last three games across all competitions – the first instance of the season where they have picked up three wins on the trot.
However, they will be pitted against Man City, who have recovered from a minor blip and have produced back-to-back victories in their last two outings.
Sitting second in the table, the Sky Blues will have the top spot in their sights, however, eight-placed Man Utd will try to throw a spanner in their works.
Manchester United vs Manchester City Match Preview
The springboard for United’s resurgence came against Brentford, where Scott McTominay’s heroics – two goals in injury time – led the Red Devils to a dramatic comeback victory.
They followed it up with a victory against Sheffield United before edging out Copenhagen in the Champions League group stage.
The 1-0 victory over Copenhagen highlighted their fight mentality and also the individual brilliance of Harry Maguire and Andre Onana.
Both had been facing backlash from the media and fans for their struggles this season, but they delivered exceptional performances against the Danish giants to prove their worth.
Of all the players, Maguire scored the only goal of the game, while Onana produced a sensational penalty save in the added time to help United secure three points for the first time in the Champions League.
Anything other than a victory would have further dented their hopes of progressing to the knockout stages.
Although United had to do it the hardest way to claim those victories, their confidence is soaring high at the moment, and it is what is needed when heading to a heavyweight fixture against Man City.
Rasmus Hojlund is set to appear in his first derby, and there is no better occasion to open his account in the Premier League, than the Dane has already netted three goals in the Champions League.
Marcus Rashford, who was on target in the last meeting against City at Old Trafford, where United crowned the winners, will also need to step up if United wish to dominate.
Elsewhere, Man City’s take-no-prisoners approach hit a stumbling block with back-to-back league defeats against Wolverhampton Wanderers and Arsenal, raising eyebrows of many.
However, City have made an immediate response by beating Brighton & Hove Albion in the Premier League and Swiss outfit Young Boys in the Champions League.
Erling Haaland broke his brief goal drought by finding the nets three times in the last two games, including an impressive double against Young Boys.
The Norwegian striker has already 11 goals to his name this season, and he will once again be a major threat against the Red Devils.
Similarly, Julian Alvarez has been an influential figure for the Cityzens this term, with the Argentine World Cup winner bagging seven goals and five assists across all competitions.
Hence, United will have to deal with the dual threat of Haaland and Alvarez.
City had the better of United four times in their last five meetings, and they will look to extend their supremacy this weekend.
Manchester United vs Manchester City Team News
United’s injury woes have contributed to their on-field struggles, with key players like Luke Shaw, Lisandro Martinez and Aaron Wan-Bissaka sidelined.
However, Casemiro, who missed the clash against Sheffield United due to injury, is said to be closing in on a return, although it looks unlikely that he will make it to the eleven.
On the other hand, City have no fresh injury concerns, while Manuel Akanji misses out owing to suspension.
Manchester United vs Manchester City possible lineups
Manchester United potential playing eleven
Andre Onana, Raphael Varane, Harry Maguire, Diogo Dalot, Sergio Reguilon, Scott McTominay, Sofyan Amrabat, Antony, Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford, Rasmus Hojlund
Manchester City potential playing eleven
Ederson, Ruben Dias, John Stones, Josko Gvardiol, Kyle Walker, Rodri, Mateo Kovacic, Rico Lewis, Julian Alvarez, Jeremy Doku, Erling Haaland
We say: Manchester United 1-3 Manchester City
Despite the home-ground advantage and their up-turn in form, United’s defence are likely to struggle against the relentless attack of Doku, Haaland and Alvarez, who can wreak havoc on any opposition in the world.
Moreover, City’s dominant head-to-head record against their cross-town rivals also plays into their favour.