Premier League 2018-19: 3 United players who need to step up in the Manchester Derby after a nightmare weekend
All eyes across the globe will be glued to the television screens when the two Manchester clubs embrace on the Old Trafford turf under the lights on Wednesday. The Manchester derby has turned into one of the most anticipated games of the Premier League in recent seasons, especially since the Blue side of Manchester have become more than capable of challenging their city rivals.
There will be more than just pride at stake this time around. Pep Guardiola's Manchester City are in a two-way battle with Liverpool and cannot afford to lose points if they hope to retain the Premier League title. On the other hand, the Red Devils are looking to finish inside the top 4 at the end of the season.
Manchester United suffered a huge blow in their quest for a Champions League spot after the 4-0 defeat at Goodison Park on Sunday. They are two points behind their fellow contenders Arsenal and Chelsea but have harder fixtures as compared to those two sides - they still have to play rivals Manchester City and Chelsea, and their recent struggles aren't giving the fans any hopes.
After a terrific start, the wheels seem to have fallen off for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and Manchester United, as they have lost five out of their last seven games in all competitions. On the other hand, Manchester City are showing no complacency in their quest for the Premier League title and have won their last 10 Premier League games in a row.
The Cityzens will be going into the game as favourites but will be well aware of the fact that they have to put up a brilliant performance to get away with the full three points.
Solskjaer on his part will be looking for a reaction from his players after the 4-0 defeat against Everton on Sunday. Here, we look at three players who need to step up for Manchester United against their city rivals on Wednesday night:
#3 Nemanja Matic
Nemanja Matic was the worst player on the pitch on Sunday. The 31-year-old looked out of sorts and was caught sleeping on the ball a couple of times. His failure to control possession in the middle of the park was one of the reasons why the Reds were overrun by Everton.
The midfielder did take the blame upon himself for the defeat. "It's one of the worst games for me personally, and for the team,” he said in a post-match interview.
“I think we deserved to lose. We did not play how we wanted to play. It's hard for me to speak about. It’s not for the young players. I’m one of the most senior players. If anyone is to blame for this it’s me," he added.
The midfielder needs to bounce back from the horror show against Everton if his side are to get the crucial three points against Manchester City.