A strong Manchester City can only help United

Manchester United have blocked Manchester City's documentary film crew access

Manchester United have blocked Manchester City's documentary film crew access

In the last three league games, City has conceded goals from corner situations against both Huddersfield (an unfortunate own goal from Nicolas Otamendi) and West Ham (Angelo Ogbonna's header following a short-corner routine).

With the Pep Guardiola model established, his squad packed with technically gifted and tactically aware devotees, City's level is set.

"Yeah, I didn't really speak after the game - I didn't have time - but I think Hector, I know him as well, and I would never give him a tackle like this", he said, according to talkSPORT. Firstly, that I had no kind of personal problem with him, no matter what the press said.

With the expected returns of David Silva, Sergio Aguero, Raheem Sterling, Vincent Kompany and Kevin De Bruyne, City at full force are a totally different prospect to the side put out in the Champions League against Shakhtar.

Less happily, this is at home, and while the Old Trafford crowd will probably accept a radically reactive approach if it is successful, it's not hard to imagine unease being provoked if it is not. City, with a pass completion rate of 88.8 per cent this season, do not look like a team with much fear of the ball.

Meanwhile, midfield is seen as a priority as well with Marouane Fellaini, Ander Herrera and Michael Carrick in their final year and they need a stable replacement for the latter to say at the most. Having an additional spare man at the back should anyway make it easier to pack that key area just outside the penalty area where City can not be allowed space. Despite being on the sidelines himself, Pogba believes that United can win the derby. The nature of Guardiola's philosophy means his side will always be vulnerable if you can get through the initial press.

One big miss for United at the weekend would be Paul Pogba. Unfortunately, I won't be playing but I will be there to help the team mentally.

And the reason wasn't far fetched, given how influential the French star has been this season for United, and even more, in the game at the Emirates, notching two assists.

It would be a surprise if United didn't choose to sit back, defend in numbers, and hit City on the break.

The men's September 2016 reunion promised much, Guardiola's slick City wiping the floor with United in the first half before a Claudio Bravo blunder enabled Zlatan Ibrahimovic to make a game of it in the second.

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