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Revenge time: Manchester United clashes with Manchester City tonight
Manchester United and Manchester City's derby always calls for a high voltage action thriller. But one thing is for sure, the quality of action of the pitch is going to be top notch, irrespective of Manchester United having almost won the EPL 2012/2013 title. A derby always remains a derby, irrespective of what has happened in the last fixture. The match is scheduled later tonight at Old Trafford.

Manchester United with 77 points has its hands on the EPL title with their immediate neighbours, Manchester City, who is 15 points adrift in second place. These two teams have met a number of times. But, it is the reds, which have a better record as they have won nine times compared to City’s four. Only a single game has been drawn ever since.

In the run up to such an important fixture, it is the defending champions, Manchester City, which has a better record as they have won their last fixture in a convincing manner against Newcastle United, 4-0. But the same cannot be said for the reds, which lost their last clash against Chelsea in the FA Cup and narrowly won against Sunderland, 1-0. If the reds play anything that they did in their last two fixtures, City will make a mockery out of the reds.

Against an attacking team such as Manchester City, which comprises players such as Sergio Aguero, Carlos Tevez, and David Silva, the United defenders needs to come up with their A game. Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic are expected to take on the City’s offensive line. But, the same can be said for City defenders, Vincent Kompany, and Matija Nastasic as well, who need to confront one of the strongest partnerships in the EPL - best strikers in the EPL, Van Persie and the ever dangerous and energetic Wayne Rooney.

But the game is not all about defending and attacking, it is also about possession, where midfielders such as Michael Carrick, Ryan Giggs, and Shinji Kagawa for United and Gareth Barry, Yaya Toure, and James Milner for City need to do a lot of hard work in the centre of the park. It is, in fact, these midfielders who control the game in the middle of the park. They would be seen on both sides of the ground – defending as well as attacking. So spreading across the squad sheet, one gets to see that both the teams are well balanced and calls for a humdinger of a match.

With the Manchester United supporting their players on the home ground, the Manchester City players need to settle down quick, else the atmosphere at Old Trafford might pressurise them more. These fans would never forget how their team suffered one of their worst defeats ever, 6-1, last season at Old Trafford, along with their agonising title race against City, which was decided on the last day of the season. It is revenge time for Manchester United.

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