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Manchester United VS Manchester City
The Biggest Derby Ever
For so long this game has been a one off game that hasn't had a big effect on the destination of the title. It was Man City's most important game of the season, and their chance to get one over their rivals whose shadow they'd been in for so long. And, as it stands, they still are.
But recently, that has been changing. In the 2007-08 season, the last one before the sensational takeover of City that changed the landscape of English football massively, City came mid-table in 9th place.
The first season after the takeover was no better, with a 10th placed finish. But the next 3 seasons up until now have been constant improvement:
- a 5th placed finish, just outside the Champions League spots, in 2009-10.
- a 3rd placed finish, narrowly behind Chelsea and United, in 2010-11.
- This season, currently sitting 3 points behind Man United, which is where this game becomes so important.
Because now this clash of city rivals is not just a chance to get one over your neighbours but actually a crucial game in deciding the destination on the title.
The Top Of The Table Before The Game
How Will The Title Be Won
In January 2012 everyone thought that Manchester City had it wrapped up with their 5 point lead. But it all changed and by April it was United that were surefire favourites as they were now 5 points clear, and for a short time, 8 points.
But they threw it away with a defeat to Wigan and a draw to Everton and suddenly not only were Man City back in it, but they were the team on form.
As you can see from the table, there is just 3 points seperating the top 2, meaning a United win would put them 6 points clear with a possible 6 points left to claim, meaning unless United suffered an extraordinary collapse they would have the title in their hands.
However if City win then things get interesting: both teams would have 83 points, but Man City would the superior goal difference, by at least 8, depending on the scoreline.
That would mean if both teams, as expected, won their last 2 games, the Premier League title would come down to goal difference. Of course 8 goals is a lot and City would obviously be massive favourites to win it if it did, but you can never rule out United winning a couple of games 6-0 when they need it.
The Run In
If Manchester City were to win the game, the title would still not be wrapped up, as they are facing the trickier run-in.
- Newcastle-6th May-Away
- QPR-13th May-Home
- Swansea-6th May-Home
- Sunderland-13th May-Away
So if City were to win, they would travel to Newcastle needing to beat a team that is chasing a first Champions League spot in over a decade, before playing QPR, a team fighting to avoid relegation from the Premier League.
At the same time United will be playing two relatively simple games against mid-table opposition who have nothing to play for.
The First Manchester Derby Of The Season
Get your shirts to support your team for this season and next on the right!
Likely Line Ups
Man United (4-4-2)
Smalling Ferdinand Evans Evra
Valencia Carrick Scholes Nani
Man City (4-2-2-2)
Richards Kompany Lescott Clichy
What Will Happen?
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