Probably the most awaited manchester derby in recent times with the Arab money pumped into the blue half of Manchester looking to match the talent in the red half. Ferguson is already talking about Mark Hughes and his team and it is not in good humour, so he better be prepared for the worse in pre and post match interviews.
It’s City isn’t it? They are a small club with a small mentality. All they can talk about is Manchester United; they can’t get away from it. That arrogance will be rewarded. It is a go at us, that’s the one thing it is. They think taking Carlos Tevez away from Manchester United is a triumph. It is poor stuff.
This is what he said post the Tevez poster that came up in the blue half of Manchester.
On team strength, United is definitely weaker than last year with the exit of Ronaldo and Tevez. But credit has to be given to Ferguson’s team for their fighting attitude. They might look in deep trouble, like how they were in the last match of the Premier League, but they dig themselves out of it within no time. Average players like Fletcher come out in shining colours in situations like this giving 110% on the field. The way they played with 10 men were something not many teams in the premier league can replicate, probably the only exception could be Chelsea. And this attitude is what I would wish the Gunners can learn from Utd. But to me the most important player that this United team has is Wayne Rooney. He personifies this team the best. He got one chance when the team were leading 2-1 with 10 men and he converted a very difficult chance to make it beyond the Spurs. In team news, Rio Ferdinand looks like missing the match following his groin injury in the Champion’s league tie in mid-week.
Man City on the other hand come to this match at the back of a wonderful 4-2 victory against Arsenal. But what they have to understand is the fact that the Gunners gifted them opportunities which this United team will not. And city will be without Adebayor in this match and there is only a slight possibility that Tevez will pass a late fitness test to play against his previous employers. On paper City will have a good team pitting against Unted, but on skills and temperament, it would be a completely different ball game. With only Bellamy as the fit forward available, it would be a challenge to Hughes to put up an attacking front against United.
Wright Phillips vs Evra battle
Probably the quickest of the left-backs and right-midfielders in this league this would be an interesting battle on the cards. Anderson’s presence in the team becomes vital to support Evra in not just controlling Philips but also in helping him move forward and provide support to Rooney. Phillips on the other hand will hope that De Jong will break up enough play for the creative play of Ireland to flourish on the middle of the park.
City look more creative with Stephen Ireland and Wright Phillips in the team. But it could all be neutralised by the effectiveness of players like Fletcher and Anderson.
Prediction: 1-0 to Manchester United
Chelsea take on Tottenham Hotspurs in a London Derby which is always interesting due to the sheer number of goals and attacking play. I think this time also we won’t be surprised if there are more than 3 goals in this match. Chelsea is far more superior and this is one match in which I think Spurs will miss Modric.
Prediction:Chelsea to win 3-1
An injury-hit Arsenal take on a flly-fit Wigan at home on Saturday.The good news is that Van Persie might be ruled fit for the match and the bad news is that, that is the only good news. Still many players are injured and will take couple more weeks before we see some new face in the team. Vito mannone will be under the bars and hopefully Wenger should start with Rosicky and Eduardo.
Prediction:Arsenal to win 2-0
Liverpool are away to West Ham who lost to Wigan by a solitary goal last week away from home. But at home I expect them to trouble Liverpool