Man City v Man Utd: hosts set to edge a close encounter

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For much of the Premier League era the Manchester derby was one of the more underwhelming of local showdowns – until a certain Sheikh shook things up.

Now this massive, giant and gargantuan fixture matters almost as much to the people outside of Manchester as it does to those in the North West (no jokes about Surrey-supporting United fans, please).

The recent clashes between these teams have produced amazing goals (Wayne Rooney’s bicycle kick), dramatic late wins (Michael Owen’s 94th minute strike at Old Trafford) and title-deciding victories (City’s 1-0 win in April last year).

However, this looks like being a tamer affair, with neither side exactly hitting top form this season.

United’s ability to come from behind is impressive but their leaky defence that puts them in that position to being with is a huge concern, while City’s ability to steamroller teams hasn’t been as evident this term, with the Citizens drawing six of their 15 games already.

With neither team exactly flowing this has all the makings of being a tense affair with goals and chances at a premium.

City are the 5/4 favourites and, if there is to be a winner, it looks like being them.

They may not have been at their best so far but they’ve stuttered along undefeated in the league and have been pretty solid in all areas of the pitch.

With Sergio Aguero finally coming back to full fitness and form they may have too much up top for a United defence that has conceded an average of 1.5 goals away from Old Trafford in the league.

However, if you fancy United for the win at 11/5 then you could do a lot worse than supplementing your punt with a couple of quid on Wayne Rooney to find the net for Sir Alex Ferguson’s men.

Rooney has scored eight goals in his 17 games against City since 2004 and is currently out at 7/1 to be the first goalscorer and 11/5 to score at any time.

All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date

 

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