“Blue is dominant, but red might have a twist”, said Jim Beglin seconds before the 177th Manchester Derby kicked off at the Etihad. This comes after Jose Mourinho and the Red side of Manchester came back from being 2 – 0 down at halftime to win the game 3 – 2, the last time they played at the Etihad. 

Let’s take a look at three reasons why Manchester United were completely outplayed by their City rivals, Manchester City.


Ederson’s world-class distribution

Pep Guardiola was burdened with Joe Hart and Claudio Bravo in his first season, this, however, means no disrespect to either. Both of them are World Class keepers in their own right, just not good enough to suit the style Guardiola sets his team to play. After having the luxury of a Manuel Nuer between the posts previously, Pep would have found it difficult to deploy a team without a goalkeeper that had the skillsets that his team required. Next season, came Ederson. An addition that changed the entire dynamic of the Manchester City team, that went on to win the Premier League. His distribution is second to none in the Premier League and only Liverpool’s Alisson comes close to his Brazilian counterpart in that aspect of the game. His distribution was one of the main reasons United struggled against City, and this made things easier for the City front men. 

Lack of creativity in midfield

With Paul Pogba out with injury, the midfield of Manchester United comprised of Ander Herrera, Fellaini, and Matic. While Matic was in the team for his defensive ability and Fellaini for his aerial prowess, Herrera was expected to be the creative spark going forward and his defensive abilities were expected to help stop the creative midfielders in blue, in the form of Bernardo Silva and David Silva. The Spaniard however, had a horror show. He was completely outclassed while defending and created almost nothing the entire game, that allowed the Manchester City defenders to stroll through the game defensively while their front men were as efficient as ever. 

Martial the only source of a goal

The youngster was tipped for greatness when he made his debut for Manchester United, but his career hasn’t gone as per plan. He was even dropped from the French squad that was triumphant at the FIFA World Cup. The young Frenchman has however regained his fine form over the past few months and has scored 5 goals in his last five matches in the Premier League. The upcoming fixtures will be key for Manchester United, Martial and Jose Mourinho and a Manchester United fan could only hope that his team lives up to the extremely high standards set by the greats of Manchester.

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