United put another dent in the Citizens quest for a consecutive Premier League title with a stunning derby win at the Etihad.
Goals from Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial in the first half were enough to carry the day for the red part of Manchester! Despite a second half goal by Otamendi, City could not create enough for a comeback.
Coming in from a mid week win against Mourinho’s Tottenham, United were brilliant in the first half! With both Rashford and Martial proved as constant threats where the City’s back-line were having a difficult time to deal with. Ole opted for a 4-2-3-1 with Rashford and James providing the width hence stretching City’s defense. With Laporte still in the sidelines, Fernandinho continued as the center half paring with Stones in Pep’s 4-3-3 formation.
City fans were left stunned and the stadium fell silent after the home team conceded two goals in a span of 6 minutes within the first thirty minutes of the first half! While the home side finally began to get a grip on the game after that, especially in midfield, the damage was already done. City had repeated penalty appeals for United handballs turned down by referee Anthony Taylor and VAR before the break, while Gabriel Jesus wastefully headed a Kevin de Bruyne cross wide. In the subsequent minutes of the game United maintained defensive discipline making it difficult for City. Ole seemed to have steadied the ship and United seems to be gaining momentum.
What does this win mean for United? Apart from the bragging rights it was redemption for Ole Gunner Solskjaer who has faced constant criticism in recent times. Bagging this win especially away will definitely be a boost for Ole and his team with the top four now seemingly at the horizon. Their performance against the so called ‘small teams’ hence forth is meant to be seen since they seem to perform better against the so called ‘big teams’.
Now what does this result mean for Manchester City? Its now their fourth defeat this season and they are 14 points behind league leaders Liverpool with their defensive flaws fully displayed in the derby. City have now drifted further away its is now difficult to make a case for city but then again this is the EPL anything is possible!!
For United they beat a team labeled as one of the best in Europe with them seen as a team on transition, well the city of Manchester is indeed United!!