Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United will welcome Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City at Old Trafford today for an epic battle. For the first time ever, both managers would be competing against each other in the Premier League even though Guardiola with his 7 wins has the upper hand in the head to head record against his counterpart who has won 3 times, both teams would start the game evenly matched where anything can happen.
The fixture would also kick off the round of clashes which would be occurring this season involving managers who have a history of bad blood against each other and is thus a tie eagerly anticipated by the neutrals as well. Both the teams have made a perfect start to their respective campaigns winning all their three matches in the league so far and if both of them remain keen to keep up their unbeaten records, it would make for a nice attacking match.
Realistically though, knowing the two managers, the home team will almost be playing it safe while the visitors can also opt for a more cautious approach, weighing in their opponents, not giving them chances to dictate terms. It will be the tie where the two most expensive squads of the Premier League will go head to head against each other. With the personnel on the pitch and on the sidelines, the battle would not only be to grab the bragging rights for Manchester only, it will be a platform to hand out some strong messages to individuals who for long has not seen eye to eye with each other.
United have two major doubts for the game in Luke Shaw, who didn’t start his last international game with England, and Henrik Mkhitaryan, who picked up a knock in his international duty against Armenia. Other than that they have almost all their players available for the clash as Marouane Fellaini is also expected to be fit before the game from the injury he suffered against Southampton.
City will miss their big name striker Sergio Aguero due to a 3 match ban for his elbow to Winston Reid against West Ham United in their last game. With Wilfred Bony going out on loan on the deadline day, it would be interesting to see who Guardiola uses to lead the line at Old Trafford.
The Citizens will be without their new signings Ilkay Gundogan and Leroy Sane who are still not back to full fitness along with Vincent Kompany who is a long-term injury absentee.
Manchester United (4-2-3-1): De Gea-Valencia, Bailey, Blind, Rojo-Fellaini, Pogba-Mata, Rooney, Martial-Ibrahimović
Manchester City (4-1-4-1): Caballero; Zabaleta, Otamendi, Stones, Clichy; David Silva, Fernandinho; De Bruyne, Sterling, Navas; Nolito