Manchester City: Pep keeping cool as derby looms

06 November 2021 02:51:34 GMTPlus11
Pep Guardiola will be hoping for derby glory this weekend

Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola says it is important for him to keep a "cool head" as he prepares for Saturday's Manchester derby.

Guardiola's side, who are 1/8 to retain their Premier League title, are 4/6 to beat 15/4 hosts Manchester United in the clash at Old Trafford.

United lost their last home league game 5-0 to Liverpool and a repeat of that scoreline is 50/1.

Recent history against Pep

City have lost three of their last four league meetings with the Red Devils, drawing the other one 0-0 at Old Trafford last season, and the Citizens are bidding to bounce back from last weekend's shock 2-0 home defeat to Crystal Palace.

I can imagine how important it is for both sides.

Pep Guardiola

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The reigning champions start the weekend in third place in the table, five points behind table-toppers Chelsea - the team who beat them in last term's Champions League final - and two points behind Liverpool.

City returned to the top of their Champions League group thanks to a 4-1 win over Club Brugge on Wednesday night but they will be missing suspended defender Aymeric Laporte, sent off against Palace, and his fellow Spain international Ferran Torres, who is sidelined with a foot injury, for the derby.

Frenchman a big miss

United centre-back Raphael Varane suffered a hamstring injury in their 2-2 Champions League draw away to Atalanta and the France World Cup winner will be out of action for a month.

Asked if the derby is City's biggest game of the season, Guardiola told reporters: "I don't think so. But maybe for some people of course it's special, for the city, for many issues but at the end it's the same result, not as a semi-final or final.

"I can imagine how important it is for both sides but I have to be cool in my mind and my head to know what we have to do."

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