Manchester United continued their great recent run of form and kept themselves above their bitter rivals in the table with a 4-2 win at Old Trafford last weekend.
United had failed to beat City in the two teams' last four meetings. The Red Devils now sit four points ahead of Manchester City in third place.
Battle of Manchester
The game was very much a team in a great vein of form against a team struggling to find their form in the closing stages of the season. United boss Louis van Gaal will be delighted with his sides performance and the win, whereas Manuel Pellegrini is fearing the sack at the end of the season unless his side improve.
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This was their sixth defeat in their last eight matches in all competitions and leaves them struggling in fourth place. City looked the better team in the opening stages, moving the ball well and creating chances. The early pressure paid off when Sergio Aguero scored a tap-in after some great movement inside the box to lose his man.
United then began to work their way back to the game and equalised with a rather fortunate goal from Ashley Young. The rebound from a attempted dribble bounced back to him with an open goal beckoning.
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They then took the lead through Fellaini after an Ashley Young cross to the back post. City struggled to fight back but were unable to create any clear-cut chances and could have had Vincent Kompany sent off for a tough studs up challenge on Daley Blind.
United carried on their pressure throughout the second half and were able to increase their lead through in-form man Juan Mata. There were question marks for offside in the build up to the goal when Rooney played the ball through to Mata, but the linesman kept his flag down and the Spaniard kept his cool and slotted through Joe Hart's legs.
The final icing on the cake came through a Chris Smalling goal with a powerful header from a Young free kick. The winger is looking like a potential contender to return to the England side with his recent performances, getting himself a goal and two assists in this game. The United man will certainly be giving Roy Hodgson a selection headache if he can keep up this form until the end of the season.
Aguero then scored his 100th City goal but it was only a late consolation with the game already won for United. One negative from a United point of view will be seeing Michael Carrick coming off the pitch injured. The midfield man has been key to United's recent form bringing a calmness to the midfield with his passing range and protection of the back four.
What did you think to the game? Which team will finish higher United or City? let us know in the comments below.
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