Manchester City vs Manchester United preview

By Ric Turner, Sat 19 March 2016 17:01

Manchester City vs Manchester United previewKompany ruled out, whilst Otamendi faces late fitness test

Manchester City vs Manchester United

Competition: F.A. Premier League

Date: 4.00pm, Sunday 20th March 2016

Venue: Etihad Stadium, Manchester

Referee: Michael Oliver Assistants: J Brooks, G Beswick Fourth Official: A Marriner

Odds: City 5/6, Draw 11/4, United 7/2

Tickets: Sold out

TV: Sky Sports

Manchester City

Manager: Manuel Pellegrini

Squad (from): Caballero, Hart, Wright, Clichy, Demichelis, Kolarov, Mangala, Otamendi, Sagna, Zabaleta, Fernandinho, Fernando, M Garcia, Navas, Silva, Sterling, Toure, Aguero, Bony, Iheanacho

Injured: Nasri, De Bruyne, Delph, Kompany

Doubtful: Otamendi

Suspended: None

Form guide: DWLLLW

Manchester United

Manager: Louis van Gaal

Squad (from): De Gea, Romero, Darmian, Riley, Rojo, Varela, Valencia, McNair, Borthwick-Jackson, Williams, Fosu-Mensah, Blind, Smalling, Schneiderlin, Schweinsteiger, Herrera, Fellaini, Carrick, Weir, Mata, Young, Lingard, Depay, Martial, Rashford

Injured: Rooney, Jones, Keane, Shaw, Young

Doubtful: Herrera, Borthwick-Jackson

Suspended: None

Form guide: LWWLDW

Nicolas Otamendi faces a late fitness test, after sustaining a dead leg during the 0-0 draw with Dynamo Kiev on Tuesday. Vincent Kompany, who suffered a calf injury in the same game, is ruled out, and could possibly miss the remainder of the season. Eliaquim Mangala and Martin Demichelis are on standby.

United are just four points behind City in the table, and Sunday's clash could have a huge bearing on the race for Champions League places. However, manager Manuel Pellegrini was keen to play down the importance of the clash.

“I think that a derby is always dangerous regardless of the position of both teams – if it’s in the Premier League it’s doubly dangerous.

“It’s hard because they have good players – United have a very good squad, it doesn’t matter which play or in which way they play, they’re always a dangerous team.

“It’s a target [to finish above United] but it’s not the most important thing, the most important thing is to finish first, then you're above all other teams. It’s a special game and I know the players treat it that way for the fans.

“If you have 24/48 hours more rest, it’s important – it’s not a decisive thing for the game but you can prepare better. That’s the problem with the Europa League as you play on Thursday – it’s not easy to prepare.”

City's last home game against United ended in a 1-0 win, with Sergio Aguero scoring the only goal of the game. Overall City have won 47 of the 159 games played against United, with 48 draws and 64 defeats.

Prediction: City 1 United 1