Manchester United take on Manchester City in a critical derby on Sunday and the winner can lay down a huge gauntlet where the title race is concerned.
Man United are currently just two points behind their city rivals who are top of the Premier League and will want to usurp the Sky Blues by winning at Old Trafford. It would send out a huge statement to the rest of the league and Louis van Gaal must ensure he picks the right team to get the best possible result against City.
Morgan Schneiderlin will be key to United’s chances when they take to the field, as he will be responsible for breaking up play and controlling the midfield. The Frenchman is in great form after stellar displays against both Everton and CSKA Moscow and will have the tough task of keeping tabs on Yaya Toure. The Ivorian is one of City’s most important players and if Schneiderlin can keep him in check, United will have a great chance to get all three points.
Ander Herrera is another player who can boost the Reds chances in such a huge game. The 26-year-old put on a stunning display last time out in the Premier League with a man of the match performance against Everton and United will need his energy and link up play. Herrera in the No.10 role can cause all sorts of problems for the opposition in the final third and could be crucial in making chances for his teammates. The 26-year-old can unlock defences with his incisive passing and he will be required to do so against a stubborn City back four.
Daley Blind has not started a game since before the international break and the loss to Arsenal but should be the first choice at left-back ahead of Marcos Rojo. Blind replaced his teammate in the draw with CSKA Moscow in midweek after the Argentine was targeted by the the Russian champions. Rojo struggled hugely and it would be no surprise if City decide to employ the same tactic. Blind can provide extra cover at left-back and is more defensively resolute than his colleague and will need to be up against the speedy Jesus Navas on the right wing.
This trio will be hugely important for United in a game they must win. They will give the Reds the best chance tog et a positive result against City and, hopefully, inspire the team to a performance that will see them overtake their rivals at the top of the Premier League.