City v United: Preview

20 April 2010 02:56
Michael Carrick insists Manchester United have not thrown in the title towel just yet. United are four points behind Chelsea, with only four games remaining. Realistically, this weekend appears to be their last chance to breathe fresh life into their flagging challenge given they must travel to Eastlands for the Manchester derby, which will conclude roughly three hours before Carlo Ancelotti's men take on in-form Spurs. By beating Arsenal in midweek, Tottenham have already given an indication their FA Cup exertions last weekend have not had too dramatic an effect, and Carrick is looking ahead to the City encounter with a degree of optimism. "We are not giving up," he said. "We still have that lifeline and whilst we still have half a chance, we will continue to fight. "Tomorrow could throw up something different again. "You just have to hope that we can get the right result and things will swing back in our favour." Having joined United in 2006, at the start of a run that saw the Reds crowned champions in three successive seasons, and reach the minimum of a Champions League semi-final in each one, failing to scale the heights is a new experience for Carrick. Yet you would have to be around Old Trafford for far longer to experience a time when City were a genuine threat, as they look like becoming. There have already been three pulsating clashes between the sides this season, with another tense encounter certain given the respective prizes both sides are still playing for. "It is more than a local rivalry," said Carrick. "It has intensified a lot, understandably with the way things have gone. "You could see that in the Carling Cup semi-finals. Those two games were brilliant and I am sure it will be something like that tomorrow. Hopefully we will get the same result." United hope to have Wayne Rooney and Rio Ferdinand back for the clash. City, meanwhile, are at almost full strength with Wayne Bridge expected to play at left back. Joleon Lescott is out injured. Manchester City (from): Given, Nielsen, Onuoha, Kay, Boyata, Kompany, Toure, Bridge, Garrido, Sylvinho, Adam Johnson, Cunningham, Zabaleta, De Jong, Barry, Bellamy, Wright-Phillips, Tevez, Santa Cruz, Adebayor, Ibrahim, Nimely.

Manchester United (from): Van der Sar, Kuszczak, Foster, Neville, O'Shea, Rafael, De Laet, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evans, Evra, Carrick, Hargreaves, Scholes, Fletcher, Park, Gibson, Obertan, Valencia, Giggs, Nani, Berbatov, Rooney, Macheda, Diouf. City league form: WLWWW

United league form: WWWLD

Key opponent: Carlos Tevez - Argentinian has been in the goals all season and will be up for this one

Prediction: City 2 United 2 - There look to be goals in the game and although City are in great form, Fergie will no doubt have the Reds fired up

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Source: Manchester_EveningNews