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2023/24 English Premier League
Manchester United v Manchester City
Sunday, 29 October 2023
Kick-off is at 15h30
The 191st Manchester derby
could make or break Manchester United's season when they host Manchester City at Old Trafford on Sunday, October 29 in the late kick-off.
The Red Devils have been nowhere near their best this term as they've struggled to replicate the kind of performances that saw them beat City 2-1 in the corresponding fixture 10 months ago.
The 2-1 win over Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on October 21 encapsulated their campaign after a superb strike from Diogo Dalot rescued Erik ten Hag's side, who picked up only their fifth win of 2023-24.
United moved up to eighth in the standings, although they remain six points behind their neighbours, who climbed to the top of the table with a 2-1 victory over Brighton.
They only made gains on the Seagulls (7th) and Arsenal (2nd) after Newcastle (6th), Aston Villa (5th) and Liverpool (3rd) all won on matchday 9.
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The result against Albion was important for City following back-to-back defeats against Wolves and the Gunners prior to the international break, having not dropped a single point in their opening seven games.
Pep Guardiola's side level with Arsenal on 21 points, but a superior goal difference sees them edge their title rivals in the table.
Sofyan Amrabat could play a crucial role against City with Casemiro carrying a minor knock he sustained while on international duty which forced him to miss their last clash. The Morocco international has only played two games in his preferred position as a defensive midfielder after starting at left-back on his full United debut against Crystal Palace due to an injury crisis in defence.
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Jeremy Doku is becoming increasingly influential for City following his switch from Rennes in August. The Belgian winger tormented Brighton on the left flank and set up Julian Alvarez for the opener after just seven minutes before passing up two chances to get on the scoresheet himself, having opened his account in the 3-1 win over West Ham on matchday 5.
Rasmus Hojlund has yet to get off the mark in the Premier League after scoring three times in two Champions League games for United, but Ten Hag is not worried and insists the Danish striker will take his chance when it comes.
"It is not a concern. He is scoring for Denmark, he is scoring for us in the Champions League so he will score for us also in the Premier League," the Dutchman said.
"I have no doubts about that. Today he was two or three times in a very good spot. There will come his moment and he will finish."
Guardiola was full of praise for Doku, who scooped the Man-of-the-Match award against the Seagulls and has settled in his new surroundings quickly.
"I am really pleased for his impact since he came into us," the Spaniard said. "After the West Ham game he didn't play one or two [games] because of doubts he has to play game, game, game and he is not used to it.
"He is an exceptional winger. Jeremy is so smart in defensive areas and after, he has the quality. He got to the byline and got us the first goal and there were many actions. It's the start of many years for him in this house."
Head-to-Head (Last Five Premier League Meetings)
Matches - 5
Man United - 2
Man City - 3
Draws - 0
Premier League Matchday 10 fixtures:
Friday, October 27
21h00: Crystal Palace v Tottenham Hotspur
Saturday, October 28
13h30: Chelsea v Brentford
16h00: Bournemouth v Burnley
16h00: Arsenal v Sheffield United
18h30: Wolverhampton Wanderers v Newcastle United
Sunday, October 29
15h00: West Ham United v Everton
16h00: Aston Villa v Luton Town
16h00: Brighton & Hove Albion v Fulham
16h00: Liverpool v Nottingham Forest
17h30: Manchester United v Manchester City
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