Manchester derbies are always one of the most intriguing fixtures in the Premier League campaign but, this year, it’s set to be a whole lot better.
Not only are the two sides set to go head-to-head for the league title, their respective managers aren’t exactly the best of friends.
Pep Guardiola and Jose Mourinho have had a somewhat indifferent relationship having been rivals at Barcelona and Real Madrid. The pair clashed several times during their spell in La Liga and that looks set to happen in the Premier League this season.
For those in Manchester, you’re either a City fan or a United fan.
However, for a certain Gerard Pique, the choice is slightly more complicated.
Pique played 23 times for United during a four-year spell before returning to Barcelona. The manager when he arrived back at Camp Nou? Guardiola.
For the next four years, Guardiola’s side dominated Spanish football winning three consecutive La Ligas, two Copa del Reys and two Champions Leagues with Pique playing an instrumental role and forming a great relationship with his boss.
So, who is Pique supporting this season? His former club or his former manager?
"Between Pep and United I opt for the latter,” he said, per ESPN.
"I spent some really good years there and I think of it as my second home. I will always be a Red Devil.”
United fans will no doubt be delighted to have the backing of Pique, but they may not appreciate his comments about City’s new manager.
Pique on Guardiola
Having played under him for four years, Pique knows exactly what he’ll bring to the Premier League and has admitted that he will have some ‘affection’ towards United’s arch-rivals.
“He [Guardiola] will help the Premier League so much and increase its level,” he said.
"I have to admit I'll follow City with affection because there are more people there that I know.
"It's not just Pep, but Txiki, who helped a lot with my signing for Barca, and Spain teammates like [Jesus] Navas and [David] Silva.
"I will try to follow it as a fan. It's a competition which is a pleasure to follow.”
Bookmakers suggest that the title race will be between the two Manchester clubs and both sides have made perfect starts to the season. City have beaten Sunderland 2-1 and Stoke 4-1, while United have breezed past Bournemouth 3-1 and Southampton 2-0.
Unfortunately, we have to survive through an international break before we can start to look forward to the mouth-watering clash at Old Trafford on September 10.
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