By Dave Marshall
Ahead of what promises to be one of the most highly anticipated Manchester derbies in recent years, Manchester United have been handed a huge boost as City manager, Pep Guardiola admits that United’s aerial threat is making him scared.
Both teams highlighted their title ambitions over the weekend with United defeating Arsenal away from home 3-1 with a truly efficient performance as a masterclass from our goalkeeper, David De Gea ensured we took all three points.
City, on the other hand showed they can grind our results after a third consecutive 2-1 victory in the league with a victory over West Ham on Sunday, which shows that they can win even when things are not going so well.
For much of the game at The Etihad, it looked like City were going to drop their first points since August but a late goal by David Silva ensured that City still hold an eight-point advantage at the top of the table. United and City square up on Sunday at Old Trafford with Mourinho knowing that anything short of a victory will hand the advantage to The Citizens.
Guardiola’s teams have traditionally struggled with teams that possess very tall players, and it was laid bare on Sunday after Angelo Ogbonna scored what was a free header for the Hammers. Guardiola knows that with the likes of Matic, Lindelof, Smalling, Lukaku, Bailly, Ibrahimovic, Jones and Pogba, United have a bunch of players that can hurt his team.
Speaking to the BBC after the game, Guardiola said “It was similar to the last few games, in the second half I thought we would score. It was massive. They played 10 players inside the box, it was almost impossible. It’s a big victory. It showed what we are.
“You have to try to solve it [when teams pack the defence]. We had two strikers in the second half and that helped, it was a big lesson for me. We created more with two.” He added.
City have won 13 straight matches in the league but United’s performance away at Arsenal offers fresh hope for us. Besides, we are unbeaten in 40 home matches since last year, with our last loss, incidentally being against Manchester City.
If we use our height advantage, we can torment City and with our attacking players, we have every right to feel we can defeat City and end their unbeaten run.