By Alex McMahon
United and City usually produce entertaining matches
Although the Premier League title looks to be heading to London for the first time since the 2009-2010 season, Sunday’s match between Manchester United and Manchester City is set to be one of the most fiercely contested in recent memory. For the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson’s time at the club, United are above City in the table and are looking to cement their position in the Champions League spots.
The Blues have won five of the last six Manchester derbies, including the last three at Old Trafford. However, United will be confident of picking up all three points after earning victories over Tottenham and Liverpool in recent weeks. We take a look at six of the most memorable Manchester derbies in recent years and discuss the incidents throughout these epic fixtures.
February 2011: Manchester United 2-1 Manchester City
This encounter will always be remembered for an incredibly special strike that was later voted as the greatest Premier League goal of all-time. Portuguese winger Nani gave United a half-time lead before a fortuitous David Silva goal drew City level. However, the best was yet to come as Wayne Rooney scored a phenomenal overhead kick, that left Joe Hart rooted to the spot. United held on to give their fans a derby moment that they will never forget.
September 2013: Manchester City 4-1 Manchester United
This was United’s first Manchester derby without Sir Alex Ferguson at the helm in 26 years, and David Moyes’ side were dominated by a rampant City side. Sergio Aguero and Yaya Toure steered the hosts into a comfortable 2-0 lead at the break, before the Argentine scored his second and Samir Nasri made it 4-0 after just 50 minutes. Rooney scored an excellent free-kick for United late on, but Moyes’ side were humiliated and after seven months and a 3-0 home defeat to the Blues later in the season, the Scotsman was sacked.
December 2012: Manchester City 2-3 Manchester United
City had nicked the Premier League title from United’s grasp in the dying seconds of the previous year, and the Reds wanted revenge. Rooney had scored twice in the opening 30 minutes to give the visitors a commanding lead, but Toure and Pablo Zabaleta scored in the second-half to draw City level in the 87th minute. However, there was late drama as Robin van Persie scored an injury time free-kick to send the travelling United fans crazy and earn a crucial victory in the title race.
April 2010: Manchester City 0-1 Manchester United
Paul Scholes scored an injury-time winner to keep United’s hopes of winning the Premier League title alive. The England international popped up with a late header to narrow the gap to Chelsea to just one point at the top of the league. This game is perhaps best known for Gary Neville’s celebration at the end of the game, as the emotional United captain kissed Scholes full on the lips!
October 2011: Manchester United 1-6 Manchester City
Sir Alex Ferguson had labelled this clash as one of the most important derbies throughout his tenure at the club, but United were convincingly beaten by a near-perfect City team. Mario Balotelli opened the scoring, unveiling his ‘Why always me?’ t-shirt as he made a clear statement to the British media. Furthermore, a brace from Dzeko, as well as strikes from Silva, Aguero and another from Balotelli inflicted a shocking home defeat on United. City went on to win the league on goal difference that year…
September 2009: Manchester United 4-3 Manchester City
In what is often regarded as the best Manchester derby ever, United earned another epic victory thanks to a 97th minute strike from Michael Owen. Gareth Barry cancelled out Rooney’s early opener to ensure that the scores were all square at the break, before United were twice pegged back in the second half by Craig Bellamy goals. The match looked destined for a draw, but Michael Owen popped up in the seventh minute of stoppage time to send the Old Trafford crowd wild and leave Mark Hughes livid.
Will Louis van Gaal’s United side beat Manchester City on Sunday, or do you think the Premier League champions will secure their fourth successive victory at Old Trafford? Let us know!