In preparation for the Sunday derby, Pep Guardiola has singled out four Manchester United midfielders for praise.
The Manchester City manager claims that in order for his team to win all three points this weekend, they will need to play “a perfect game.” Due to schedule postponements, United will enter the game without having played in the league in a month.
Although Erik ten Hag’s team has a four-game winning streak in the Premier League, they are still five points behind City, who have played one more game. Despite United’s recent improvement in play, many are picking the home team to win by a three-point margin.
Many players have been essential to that turnaround after the defeats to Brighton and Brentford in the first round. Marcus Rashford has scored three goals in his last four games, all of which came against Liverpool and Arsenal.
He began working out again last week after recovering from an injury, as did Anthony Martial, who has played only 45 minutes this season due to hamstring and Achilles problems. Many fans have dubbed Christian Eriksen the team’s best player thus far after being impressed with the summer addition.
With his improved performance during games, Scott McTominay has also gained a number of supporters, keeping players like Fred and Casemiro out of the starting XI.
When complimenting United’s forward play in the press conference on Thursday, Guardiola singled out a few of these players.
When asked if it is good to have high-performing club rivals, he answered: “When you are on top you have more rivals. In the middle you have less rivals. Big rivals make you better.
“We have to play a perfect game [on Sunday]. They have the qualities upfront, physicality and quality in the middle with Eriksen, [Bruno] Fernandes, physicality with Casemiro and McTominay.”