April 21, 2021

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Pundits split in predictions ahead of Man City vs Manchester United

5 min read

Manchester City welcome Manchester United to the Etihad Stadium on Sunday as the top two go head-to-head in the Premier League.

As it stands, City boast a 14-point advantage over their neighbours, who need to win to keep any slim title hopes alive.

United may have their work cut out, though, with Pep Guardiola ‘s men on a stunning 21-match winning streak in all competitions as they continue their relentless pursuit of the title.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be hoping to see more from his side in an attacking sense after three goalless draws in as many matches.

It’s the third Manchester derby of the season and it could be the most important one of the lot. We have taken a look at some of football’s biggest names’ predictions for the Premier League clash.


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Louis Saha

The former United striker, despite acknowledging that City are way ahead of anyone in the country at the moment, has predicted that his old team will make a game out of it.

“I don’t see any particular team coming out on top for this one, and I think it will be a goalscoring draw. I’ll say 2-2 as my prediction,” Saha said to William Hill.

Prediction: 2-2

Dimitar Berbatov

Berbatov, formerly of United, is “calm” about Sunday’s game as he knows his old club will find extra motivation against their rivals.

“Manchester City have won 21 games in a row, that is an amazing achievement and they are looking to continue that and break records,” the ex-United star told Betfair.

“United would love to end that run. There is nothing sweeter and special than ruining the record of a rival.

“If City continue their run and break records then it will be a great achievement and they can be considered to be one of the best teams in the world.

“It will be a tough game for United at the Etihad on Sunday, but in one way I am calm because against big teams they always find that extra motivation. It’s City against United, one game and anything can happen.

“I’m not worried about shape or form going into this one, it’s just about what happens on the pitch and it will come down to who makes the least mistakes.

“You can say City may have the advantage, because they play great football, but also the pressure is on them. Whether they want to admit it or not, that winning record will be on their mind.

“The derby can be unpredictable and United can take advantage, like they have done before when people didn’t give them much chance of winning. I hope this will be the case again.”

Mark Lawrenson

Former Liverpool defender Lawrenson believes United may go to the Etihad to try and get a point and not be too concerned about risking their shape for the three points.

“It depends on what Manchester United decide to do,” he told BBC Sport.

“They beat City twice at Etihad Stadium last season and they might think ‘let’s go for it again’ this time.

“I don’t think they will, though. We’re more likely to see a repeat of United’s thinking in most of their other big Premier League games this season, where it feels like they have been happy with a point.”

Prediction: 2-0

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Manchester United were held to a 0-0 draw by Crystal Palace on Wednesday night.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and his players were frustrated for the third goalless game in succession, dropping more points to allow Man City to streak away at the Premier League’s summit, on a poor day for the forwards.

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Micah Richards

Former City defender Richards is very confident about his old side’s chances at the weekend.

“In the form that Man City are in, I expect Man City to win, If I am being totally honest,” says Richards, speaking on ¡Qué Golazo!.

“The way they are creating spaces now, I think it would be a difficult team for Man United to break down….and it’s always nice to win the derby.”

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Manchester City consolidated their position at the top of the league with a 1-0 win over Arsenal on Sunday.

Is the title all theirs already?

MEN Sport will bring you all the reaction to the match. You can have it all delivered straight to your inbox by signing up to our daily newsletter. Just put your email address in the sign-up box at the top of this article, or simply follow this link. It’s free and only takes a few seconds.

Gary Neville

United legend Neville believes Solskjaer will not allow his side to be anything like they were against Crystal Palace in midweek when they make the short trip to the Etihad.

“If you’re Man City preparing for the game on Sunday, you just know this Man United isn’t going to turn up because they will be alert, they will be alive, they’ll recognise they’ll have to be at their best, but they had to do it tonight to give themselves a little bit of a cushion ahead of Sunday when they’re playing against a top side,” the ex-United right-back said on Sky Sports.

“Manchester United can go to the Etihad on Sunday, irrespective of tonight, and have a good game. I have no doubt about that.

“On the counter-attack, they’ll be more alert in their play, they’ll certainly have woken up from tonight and they’ll be better but they’re putting themselves under real pressure.”

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