Manchester Derby: Rashford or Nolito? Zlatan or Silva? Who will win based on what they’ve shown so far this season

IT IS football’s most expensive game and will have a profound impact on the title race despite coming so early in the season.

And you can pick up clues for how the Manchester Derby will turn out based on what United and City stars have shown already so far this season.

Marcus Rashford
Will Marcus Rashford once again prove the hero for Manchester United?
IMAGE: Getty Images

Here, SunSport’s Martin Blackburn provides a rundown on each star likely to start and rates them out of ten.

Who’s been a hit, who’s been a miss and who can land Jose Mourinho or Pep Guardiola all three points?

Read on to the bottom to find out who comes out on top.


Likely line-up: De Gea, Valencia, Blind, Bailly, Shaw; Fellaini, Pogba; Rashford, Rooney, Mata; Ibrahimovic

DAVID DE GEA – Just one goal conceded in three games – keeping him out of Real Madrid’s clutches again this summer was as good as a new signing. 8

ANTONIO VALENCIA – Really caught the eye this season after being almost written off by some. Great energy and his crosses into the box have been excellent. 7

DALEY BLIND – Some feared for his future when Mourinho arrived but the utility man is justifiably keeping out established centre halves in the early weeks. 7

Eric Bailly
Eric Bailly has proved a rock at the back for Man United so far this season
IMAGE: PA:Press Association

ERIC BAILLY – New boy has already captured the hearts of United fans and become a cult figure with his all-action style. Cuts an imposing figure at the back. 8

LUKE SHAW – What a bonus for United and England to have him back after his broken leg. Already looking as though he has never been away. 8

MARCUS RASHFORD - Can Jose keep him on the bench much longer? After his winner at Hull and his Under 21s hat-trick he is hammering the manager's door down. 8

MAROUANE FELLAINI - Given a fresh start by Mourinho and has repaid the manager's faith with his performances in the first few games. Looks like a different player. 7

Marouane Fellaini
Marouane Fellaini looks back to his bulldozing best under Jose Mourinho
IMAGE: Reuters

PAUL POGBA - The world's most expensive player has shown glimpses of what he's all about - but there is much more to come. Just what United needed in midfield. 9

JUAN MATA - Must have feared the writing was on the wall for him at Wembley last month but the Spaniard has dug in and deserves his run in the side. 7

WAYNE ROONEY - The new boss wants his skipper to be scoring and creating goals and he has done what he's asked so far. 7

Zlatan Ibrahimovic
Could Zlatan Ibrahimovic decide where the three points will go at Old Trafford?
IMAGE: PA:Press Association

ZLATAN IBRAHIMOVIC - A perfect fit for Manchester United and already a hero at Old Trafford. The veteran striker scores goals and makes things happen. 8



Likely line-up: Bravo, Sagna, Stones, Otamendi, Kolarov; Fernandinho, Silva; Nolito, de Bruyne, Sterling; Iheanacho

CLAUDIO BRAVO - What a baptism of fire it would be for a new goalkeeper. Will be interesting to see how good he is with his feet after replacing Joe Hart. 7

New Manchester City signing Claudio Bravo has hit back after smears over his personal life appeared on social media
Claudio Bravo will walk into a baptism of fire when he takes on Man United
IMAGE: PA:Press Association Images

BACARY SAGNA - Fit again after a minor hamstring and likely to get the nod ahead of Zabaleta. Will have to contribute in midfield too under the new boss. 7

JOHN STONES - Settled in comfortably at the Etihad and it's not hard to see why Guardiola wanted him when he has the ball at his feet. Not been really tested defensively yet though. 8

NICOLAS OTAMENDI - Mad dash back from international duty to play. Likely to compete with Vincent Kompany for a place - if the Belgian can get fully fit. 7

ALEKSANDAR KOLAROV - The Serb impressed filling in at centre back but likely to be shifted back to his regular left-back spot. Could be vulnerable to pace down the flanks. 7

FERNANDINHO - Caught Guardiola's eye early in pre-season and is in line for a new contract at the Etihad. Don't be surprised to see him in defence at some stage. 8

David Silva
David Silva could be the man to spark more scenes of Sky Blues joy
IMAGE: Getty Images

DAVID SILVA - No surprise that the Spaniard is flourishing under Guardiola after many thought his best days had gone. The man they call 'Merlin' is weaving his magic again. 9

NOLITO - A surprise signing by the new manager but what a start he has made to life in England. Three goals to his name and the kind of technique Pep loves. 7

KEVIN DE BRUYNE - Ditched by Mourinho at Chelsea but has shown at City what he is all about. The Belgian is likely to push on again under the new boss. 8

Kevin De Bruyne
Kevin De Bruyne was let go by Jose Mourinho at Chelsea and will want revenge
IMAGE: PA:Press Association

RAHEEM STERLING - Is this the same player who had such a nightmare at Euro 2016? His confidence has been restored by Guardiola and he looks like a star again. 8

KELECHI IHEANACHO - Huge boots to fill in Aguero's absence but the young Nigerian has the self-belief to match his huge talent. Destined to be a major star. 7



Leave a comment