United v City: Darmian and Pereira in as Solskjaer wields axe

Manchester United have lost six of their past eight games and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has taken action for the derby with title-chasing City.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has rung the changes for Manchester United’s derby showdown with Manchester City as Matteo Darmian and Andreas Pereira come into the starting XI amid five changes.

United were humiliated 4-0 at Everton on Sunday and Nemanja Matic, Romelu Lukaku and Anthony Martial are among those axed from the side to face City, who can regain top spot from Liverpool if they win for a third consecutive Premier League visit to Old Trafford.

Darmian made the last of his four previous top-flight starts this season during the December defeat to Liverpool that saw the end of Jose Mourinho’s reign, but comes into the back four alongside England left-back Shaw, the captain back from suspension.

Ashley Young appears likely to operate in front of Darmian on the right of midfield, with Pereira bolstering the engine room alongside Fred as Paul Pobga looks set to enjoy a free role.

Jesse Lingard will support Marcus Rashford in attack, with United three points behind fourth-placed Chelsea in sixth and needing to emerge from a run of six defeats in eight matches across all competitions.

Fernandinho returns to the visitors’ starting line-up in place of the injured Kevin De Bruyne, freeing up Ilkay Gundogan to play in a more advanced midfield role.

Club captain Vincent Kompany starts alongside Aymeric Laporte at the heart of City’s defence, although weekend goalscorer Phil Foden has to be content with a place on the bench alongside Leroy Sane.

 

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