Manchester City host Manchester United in a crunch Premier League game as the Sky Blues look to win a first league derby in nearly two years.
Manchester City will look to extend their lead in the Premier League standings as they host their local rivals in the Manchester Derby on Sunday. The hosts are currently on a 21-match winning streak in all competitions and have opened up a 12 point lead at the top of the table with a game in hand.
Pep Guardiola is expected to make several changes to his starting lineup from the team that started in a 4-1 victory over Wolves in the mid-week clash.
Ederson will continue between the sticks for the Citizens. Aymeric Laporte started alongside Ruben Dias at the centre back position against Wolves. However, John Stones is almost certain to claim his spot back and walk his way into the starting lineup. Stones and Dias have been the best centre-back pairing in Europe this season.
Joao Cancelo who played on the left-back position against Wolves, is likely to occupy his regular right-back position, pushing Kyle Walker out of the starting lineup. Oleksandr Zinchenko will come back into the side and start on the left-back position.
Kevin De Bruyne is a certain starter in midfield, and will play a key role in driving his team forward against the Red Devils.
Rodri was instrumental in the 4-1 win over Wolves on Tuesday. It was his lofted pass to Mahrez from the centre of the park that created the opportunity for the first goal. Defensively, he was rock solid and is expected to start against Manchester United.
IIkay Gundogan was rested in the midweek clash, only to appear in the match later as a substitute. The German has been one of the best players in the league this season, and has played a vital part in City’s dominant run of form. He will complete the three-man midfield to start in the Manchester Derby.
Riyad Mahrez has impressed in the last couple of games and has earned Guardiola’s trust. He set up Stones’ winner against West Ham last week, and it was his pass that prompted an own goal from Leander Dendoncker in the midweek. He also scored a late goal to wrap up the match for the hosts. Raheem Sterling is a sure starter for City in a crunch fixture, and will look forward to having a good performance against Manchester United, a side against whom he is yet to score.
Phil Foden is expected to complete the three man attack. The young Englishman has not started since the Champions League fixture against Borussia Monchengladbach and is expected to be given an opportunity on Sunday.
Pep Guardiola has opted to go in for a flexible front three in big games, without an out and out striker. Sterling will operate as a false nine, with Mahrez on the right wing and Foden occupying the left side.