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Manchester City: Hart, Zabaleta, Kolarov, Demichelis, Kompany, Fernando, Yaya Toure, Navas, Milner, Jovetic, Aguero.
SUBS: Caballero, Clichy, Sagna, Fernandinho, Boyata, Dzeko, Nasri
Manchester United: De Gea, Valencia, Smalling, Rojo, Shaw, Blind, Fellaini, Januzaj, Rooney, Di Maria, van Persie
SUBS: Lindegaard, McNair, Carrick, Fletcher, Herrera, Mata, Wilson
Manchester Derby Preview
Written by JamesMartin
Follow @JamesMartin013 on Twitter
Both sides are missing key players from the side. David Silva has been very good for City this season, playing clever little balls through to the attackers. He was injured in the midweek game, and consequently City could struggle to create as many chances as usual. United’s Radamel Falcao is also ruled out through injury, although this won’t concern the Red Devils too much – Robin Van Persie and Wayne Rooney (back from suspension) are hardly a bad front two. The United defence is also still very much depleted through injury, and Sergio Aguero will surely stand a good chance of capitalising on the weakened back line. He has scored an extremely impressive 36 FPL points in the last four games, and 24.7% of players who own him will be hoping for another goal or two today.
It’s hard to know where to start in terms of the United goal threat. There attack force is, at least on paper, extremely impressive. Robin Van Persie and Wayne Rooney are both very capable of scoring, and their job is made easier by the excellent service they have been receiving from Angel Di Maria of late. Juan Mata could also be a threat, but there’s no guarantee he’ll start; his game time has been adversely affected by the arrival of the new crop of talent over the summer. Even Daley Blind popped up with a goal recently, saving a point against West Bromwich Albion. All over the pitch they have people who can score goals, but they will have to work hard to get through a strong City back line.
Vincent Kompany is an ever-present in the back four, and his leadership as well as his technical ability strengthen the defence hugely. He will likely be partnered by Martin Demichelis – Mangala was given a chance against West Ham, but he played poorly. The full-backs are also competent defensively, but are perhaps more significant from an FPL point of view for their impact going forward. Zabaletta makes some excellent runs down the flank, and can usually find a good ball into the box. At left back, nobody ever really knows whether it will be Clichy or Kolarov who plays. If it is Kolarov, United will have an extremely attacking player on their hands. The Serbian loves to run up the pitch, and he has an extremely powerful shot. He is also a threat from free kicks; his regular rotation means that he is owned by just 4.9% of players, but those who have him will be hoping for another thunderbolt today.
In terms of the final score, it’s a very tough game to predict. Neither side come into the game in good form, but I personally can’t see City slipping to three consecutive defeats. I think that Aguero will rip apart the United defence, scoring at least one and perhaps two or three. I think that United will score as well, as the attacking threats of Van Persie, Rooney and Di Maria are impossible to ignore. My score prediction is 4-2 Manchester City.
My name is James Martin, (follow me on Twitter @JamesMartin013) and I’m a keen blogger as well as a huge Liverpool fan. I’m also a complete FPL addict. I guest blog for multiple websites, and have my own blog (www.jamesmartinblogs.blogspot.com) where you can see all of my Liverpool-related articles. Enjoy!