It’s March and Manchester City is not top of the Premier League. Yes, this season has not been the norm for Pep Guardiola‘s side. However, their recent form has been impressive and they find themselves just a point below Liverpool. But, in their quest to move ahead of Jurgen Klopp’s Reds, the Sky Blues face a tricky encounter against rivals, Manchester United.

The Red Devils find themselves out of the Champions League spots and are 6th in the table. Coming off a defeat to Fulham, the pressure is on Erik ten Hag & Co. Hence, they will be going full throttle against Manchester City. Ahead of the anticipated clash, how do the two sides compare regarding lineups, stats, & other metrics?

Team & Injury News


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Manchester City is the more fortunate side regarding injury absentees. For the Sky Blues, Jack Grealish is the only confirmed absentee after picking up an injury against Luton Town. Defender, Josko Gvardiol missed the last 3 games. But, he is doing ‘good ‘ per his manager and is back in training. Hence, it is possible that the Croatian could feature on the bench. But the big news for the Etihad side is Kevin De Bruyne’s return. The Belgian missed the last league game, but it was precautionary per Guardiola.

via Reuters

Manchester United is facing an injury crisis of sorts as they will likely be without 8 players for the clash! Luke Shaw, Lisandro Martinez, Mason Mount, Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Tyrell Malacia, Anthony Martial, and Rasmus Højlund are all confirmed absentees.

There are also serious doubts regarding the availability of Harry Maguire, who was out with an unspecified knock in the previous match against Nottingham Forest.

Confirmed lineups

Manchester City (4-2-3-1): Ederson; Walker, Dias, Stones, Ake; Silva, Rodri; De Bruyne, Doku, Foden;Haaland

Manchester United (4-3-2-1): Onana; Dalot, Varane, Evans, Lindelof; Casemiro, Mainoo, Mctominay; Fernandes, Garnacho; Rashford

Manchester City vs. Manchester United prediction

Injuries to key players mean Erik ten Hag will have to field a much weaker team than he would have liked. Moreover, the absence of their #9, Rasmus Højlund, is a huge miss against Manchester City’s water-tight defense. Although it is unlikely that Haaland would repeat his 5-goal heroics from the Luton game, we predict him to score a brace with the final scoreline being 3-0 to Manchester City.

FPL tips

As far as FPL is concerned, the player to focus on is Erling Haaland. The Norwegian striker features in 76% of the FPL teams for this weekend. Hence, how will you gain an edge over your rivals? The easy choice is to captain the Manchester City striker. Factoring in that Haaland is the league’s leading goalscorer (17) and has an impressive record against Manchester United, the decision to put the armband around the Norwegian could give you maximum points over differential captains like Ollie Watkins, Son Heung-min, and Bukayo Saka.

Manchester City vs. Manchester United: Head-to-Head stats


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The two sides first met in 1894, and there have been 189 matches since. Among the 190, United has come out on top in 77 while Manchester City has emerged victorious in 60 of them.

How to watch the game?

The Manchester Derby kicks off at the Etihad Stadium at 10:30 am ET (7:30 am PT) on March 3rd. Viewers in the USA can watch the game on the USA Network channel. Moreover, the game can also be streamed via the ‘Peacock Premium’ service. Other streaming services include fuboTV & Sling TV.


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Can the Red Devils surprise Manchester City? Let us know your predictions in the comments below.

Written by

Adithya Narayanan


One take at a time

Adithya is a Soccer Writer at EssentiallySports. A Liverpool fanboy, he takes pride in being alive to witness Jurgen Klopp taking the Reds to domestic and European glory. Adithya loves an in-depth soccer chat involving tactical intricacies and stats.
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Edited by

Daniel D'Cruz