This Saturday evening sees us once again head across Manchester, close to the area of Newton Heath to face our local rivals Manchester City. How many Manchester derbies have there been though between the two teams, well this in fact will be the 176th Manchester derby, but of course this season it has more significance for some. Let’s not focus on them though, whether they win the league against us this weekend or next weekend against Spurs, they’ve won it this season and that will soon be a fact.
At the end of the day, I’ll be there in the City of Manchester stadium on Saturday tea time supporting my own team. I’ve not missed a derby at their place for a fair few years now, I believe the last one was when Scholes scored the winner in injury-time in April 2010 because I had to work. And I mean I had to work!
Anyway, it’ll be a strange day of course and no doubt there will be trouble before and definitely afterwards with it being at that time of the day. Over the last few years I’ve seen more spats leaving the ground than ever before and with more alcohol inside people the worst it will be I’m sure. Not that I’ll be getting involved. Head down, keep quiet and walk quickly back to a pub on the other side of town before heading home on the local train.
There hasn’t been many goals in this fixture the last three years has there, just the two in fact. Aguero got the winner three season ago, Rashford the winner two seasons ago and then it was a poor 0-0 last season. I wouldn’t be surprised if that this is the same score-line this year as Mourinho will not be going there to attack them at all and to be fair I can understand that. Defending is fine in certain games thought, but you still have to be able to have an outlet and at least create a few half decent chances.
Yes Lukaku had a poor month before Christmas but he has proven without doubt that if you create chances for him, he will more than likely score. His confidence is sky-high at the moment, as is Rashford’s and he hasn’t even been playing regularly. When we create a chance or hopefully chances, then we must take them and if we come away with a 1-0 victory then so be it. Job done. Another win over City.
I certainly won’t be celebrating the fact we might have denied them winning the league because at some point in the very near future they will be doing that anyway and looking down at us some plus ten or so points behind them. A win is a win in the Manchester derby and if we can get our 73 derby victory then brilliant. Enjoy derby day! Remember we “missed” them for quite a few years when they were playing in the old Division One and Division Two.