Manchester United projected XI vs. Manchester City: Antony out, midfielder to make Derby debut

According to manchesterworld, a confident Erik ten Hag asserted on Thursday that Manchester United can overcome European champions Manchester City when the two teams meet this weekend. The Red Devils have lost five of their previous six Manchester derbies, including a 3-0 defeat in October. However, at his pre-match news conference, Ten Hag mentioned last season’s victory against City and said he can’smell’ his players’ motivation.

“We are in a good run,” said the Dutchman. “This is a great time for us since we are all together. We work well together and devise a solid strategy.We have previously performed well against City and, more recently, against Liverpool, so we will be well prepared. The guys are ready and looking forward to it. I can smell it. I’m around here and have spoken with the guys, so we’re quite happy.

Ten Hag also confirmed that all eight players who missed the midweek FA Cup triumph against Nottingham Forest will not be available for Sunday’s encounter. This means Harry Maguire will miss out, leaving United with only five healthy senior defenders.

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Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Lisandro Martinez, Luke Shaw, and Tyrell Malacia are also out, with United’s problems so severe that Sofyan Amrabat had to play left-back in the 1-0 victory at the City Ground. Anthony Martial and Rasmus Hojlund have both been hurt in the incident. United consequently have no forwards available and are set to choose Marcus Rashford in that capacity once more. Despite the paucity of attacking alternatives, Antony may slip out following a mediocre performance in Nottingham on Wednesday.

Here’s the XI we think Ten Hag will pick…

1. GK: Andre Onana

Is starting to put together a more consistent run of form following his difficult start to life at Old Trafford.

2. RB: Diogo Dalot

The only fit right-back in the squad with Wan-Bissaka injured.

3. CB: Raphael Varane

Was controversially left out of the side when the teams last played, with Jonny Evans starting instead.

4. CB: Victor Lindelof

Returned to centre-back in midweek and is likely to continue in that role at the Etihad.

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