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Man U keen to sharpen City’s pain

Man U keen to sharpen City’s pain
Louis van Gaal’s increasingly confident Manchester United will look to twist the knife in Manchester City’s side when the derby rivals clash in Sunday’s Premier League showdown at Old Trafford.

A run of five consecutive victories has taken United above City for the first time this season and another success this weekend would blacken yet further the storm clouds gathering over the Etihad Stadium. City’s 2-1 loss at Crystal Palace on Monday left them nine points behind leaders Chelsea having played a game more, effectively ending their title defence, and they now face a battle to secure a Champions League place.

Fourth in the table, Manuel Pellegrini’s team enjoy a seven-point lead over fifth-place Liverpool, but both Arsenal and United have stolen a march on them in the race for automatic Champions League qualification and defeat on Sunday would leave them vulnerable to attack from below. After five losses in seven games for his side, City manager Pellegrini has found himself the subject of media speculation that his days at the Etihad are already numbered.

But although defeat at Van Gaal’s hands would further weaken the Chilean’s position, there is reason for optimism in City’s recent derby record. Victory would give City five straight league wins against United for the first time and they have won on their last three visits to Old Trafford, scoring 11 goals.

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Agencies

Agencies

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