Man City 1 Man United 0

Chris Smalling

Man­chester City 1 Man­chester Uni­ted 0, Eti­had Sta­dium, Eng­lish Pre­mier Lea­gue, Nov­ember 2, 2014. Man­chester Uni­ted ex­per­i­enced an­oth­er de­feat ag­ainst Man­chester City as The Reds lost 1-0 to The Sky Blues at East­lands. The win­ning goal of The Man­chester Der­by ar­rived in the 63rd min­ute when Ser­gio Aguero ham­mered ho­me a cross from Gael Clichy.

Man­chester Uni­ted locked horns wi­th Man­chester City at the Eti­had Sta­dium in what turned out be a very com­pet­it­ive af­fair. In the cor­res­pond­ing mat­ch of the 2013-14 cam­paign, Da­vid Moyes´s new­ly com­posed te­am had lost 4-1 ag­ainst Man­chester City at East­lands on the 22nd of Septem­ber 2013. Ser­gio Aguero opened the scor­ing for City on six­teen min­utes be­fore Yaya Tou­re ad­ded a sec­ond for the ho­me out­fit in fir­st ha­lf stop­page time. El Kun then net­ted made it 3-0 to The Cit­izens in the 47th min­ute, and three min­utes la­ter Sami Nasri ex­ten­ded the lead to four goals for the hosts. Uni­ted, who were with­out Dutch goal plun­der­er Robin van Per­sie due to a groin strain, had their con­sol­a­tion when Way­ne Roo­ney ma­naged to find the net wi­th a free kick in the 87th min­ute. Un­for­tu­nately, the res­ult ag­ainst Man­chester City was a taste of things to come un­der the Moyes re­gime. Louis van Gaal´s Man­chester Uni­ted troops, who were sit­ting in ninth po­s­i­tion in the Pre­mier Lea­gue ta­ble, came in­to the en­counter at the Eti­had Sta­dium on the back of a 1-1 Pre­miership draw ag­ainst Chel­sea at Old Traf­ford, whi­le third pla­ced Man­chester City had be­en de­feated 2-1 by West Ham Uni­ted at Boleyn Gro­und in their pre­vi­ous Pre­miership fix­ture. The Man­chester Reds had to make do with­out the play­ing ser­vices of AS Monaco loanee Ra­damel Fal­cao for the meet­ing wi­th City be­cause of an in­jury to his leg, but Roo­ney and An­tonio Va­lencia bo­th made their re­turn to the fir­st te­am squad fol­low­ing sus­pen­sion and in­jury re­spect­ively. Re­gard­ing Man­chester City, Ser­bia in­ter­na­tion­al Alek­sandar Kolarov had suf­fered a calf in­jury dur­ing the wam-up ahead of the tie, and French de­fender Gael Clichy had be­en pro­moted to the start­ing el­ev­en wi­th for­mer Swansea City wing­er Scott Sin­clair tak­ing his place on the sub­stitutes´ bench.

At East­lands, Manuel Pel­legrin­i’s Man­chester City al­most went in­to the lead af­ter six min­utes when Ar­gen­tina stri­ker Ser­gio Aguero rifled a shot from clo­se ran­ge, but his ef­fort was well bloc­ked by Man­chester Uni­ted goal­keeper Da­vid de Gea. As The Man­chester Der­by pro­gressed, Louis van Gaal´s te­am were re­duced to ten play­ers in the 39th min­ute when Three Li­ons de­fender Chris Small­ing, who had al­ready be­en yel­low carded for an un­ne­ces­sary foul on Man­chester City goal­keeper Joe Hart on­ly eight min­utes earli­er, was right­fully ordered off the pitch by mat­ch of­fi­cial Mi­chael Oliv­er for a mind­less chal­lenge on fel­low Eng­land team­mate Ja­mes Mil­ner and, as a con­sequence, the centre back was now sus­pen­ded for the Pre­mier Lea­gue fix­ture ag­ainst Crys­tal Pal­ace at Old Traf­ford the fol­low­ing week­end. And el­ev­en min­utes in­to the sec­ond frame, Van Gaal ‘s al­ready de­press­ingly long list of in­jured play­ers was fur­ther ex­ten­ded wi­th So­uth Amer­ic­an de­fender Mar­cos Rojo be­ing car­ried off on a stretch­er un­able to re­turn to the pitch af­ter the highly ver­sat­ile stop­per had ma­naged to dis­lo­cate his left shoulder fol­low­ing a fatal tango wi­th his fel­low Ar­gen­tine Mar­tin Demichelis.

Then, two min­utes pa­st the hour-ma­rk, The Abu Dh­abi Group El­ev­en were able to break the de­fens­ive dead­lock as Clichy de­livered an ac­cur­ate low pass to the ir­re­press­ible Aguero who ham­mered the ball pa­st the out­stretched arms of De Gea and in­to the back of the onion bag to notch up his tenth Pre­miership goal of the 2014-15 cam­paign. The Old Traf­ford war­ri­ors push­ed hard for an equal­ising goal dur­ing the clos­ing sta­ges of the clash, but no more goals were to be sco­red at Eti­had Sta­dium. Fol­low­ing the 168th der­by fix­ture in Man­chester, Louis van Gaal told the wait­ing press corps that his si­de had played far bet­ter dur­ing the sec­ond ha­lf than dur­ing the fir­st be­cause of the will­power of the te­am. Nev­er­the­less, Man­chester Uni­ted now fou­nd them­selves sit­ting tenth in the Pre­miership ta­ble wi­th on­ly a mere thir­teen points af­ter hav­ing played ten mat­ches thus far, which was the club´s worst cam­paign open­ing since the dis­ap­point­ing 1986-87 sea­son. Man­chester City Te­am: Joe Hart, Mar­tin De­michel­is, Vin­cent Kom­pany, Pablo Za­baleta, Gael Clichy, Fer­nando Mouta, Ja­mes Mil­ner, Je­sus Navas, Yaya Tou­re, Ser­gio Aguero, Stevan Jovet­ic. Sub­stitutes: Dedryck Boy­ata, Ed­in Dzeko, Bakary Sagna, Fer­nando Luiz Roza, Samir Nasri, Scott Sin­clair, Willy Caballero. Man­chester Uni­ted Te­am: Da­vid de Gea, Chris Small­ing, Mar­cos Rojo, Lu­ke Shaw, An­tonio Va­lencia, Da­ley Bli­nd, An­gel Di Mar­ia, Mar­ou­ane Fel­laini, Ad­nan Janu­zaj, Way­ne Roo­ney, Robin van Per­sie. Sub­stitutes: Ja­mes Ant­ony Wil­son, An­der Her­rera, Mi­chael Car­rick, Ju­an Ma­ta, Pad­dy McNair, Dar­ren Fletch­er, An­ders Lindegaard.

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