In search of a historic fourth consecutive League Cup trophy, Manchester City travel to Old Trafford on Wednesday to face derby rivals Manchester United.
City go into the game having not lost a game since November, and having not lost a League Cup tie since October of 2016. The opponents on that day were Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United, in Guardiola’s first season at the club.
City beat United over two legs to reach the final last year, however, which they won against Aston Villa at Wembley.
The health of City’s squad has been an important and much-discussed topic recently for obvious reasons. Gabriel Jesus, Kyle Walker, Ederson, Eric Garcia, and Ferran Torres are all sidelined with positive COVID-19 results.
Both Aymeric Laporte and Nathan Aké were unavailable for the Chelsea game last weekend through injury, meaning the reliable due of John Stones and Ruben Dias may appear once again at Old Trafford.
United will be missing Edinson Cavani for the game – the striker is serving the second of his three-match ban after the FA judged that one of his Instagram posts was offensive.
Defenders Marcos Rojo and Phil Jones will miss the encounter, while Victor Lindelof will undergo a late fitness test to see whether he will return from a back injury.
Head to Head:
As you may suspect, the two sides have come up against each other plenty of times across the years – United have come out on top on 76 occasions to City’s 54. In more recent history, the match-ups have been more equal – the last ten games between the clubs have resulted in four wins for each side and two draws.
Guardiola’s record against United is decent, with the manager winning eight of his 16 encounters with City’s local rivals and drawing three.
City and United played each other a month ago in the Premier League, but it resulted in a passive 0-0 draw.
Since losing to Spurs on November 21st, City have gone on an unbeaten run which included an emphatic 4-1 win against Arsenal in the previous round of the Cup and last weekend’s 3-1 win over Chelsea.
United’s Premier League form has been very good – Solksjaer’s team are joint-top of the Premier League with a game in hand on Liverpool after winning four of their last five league games. They’ve reached the Semi-Finals after beating Luton, Brighton, and Everton in the earlier stages of the competition.
Martin Atkinson will officiate the game, assisted by Harry Lennard and Nick Hopton on the sidelines.
The Fourth Official will be David Coote, while the VAR technology will be managed by Jonathan Moss and Lee Betts.
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