Eamon Dunphy has given his prediction for the upcoming clash between Manchester rivals United and City at Old Trafford.
The RTE Sport pundit, speaking on 2fm’s Game On programme on Friday night, envisages a tough afternoon at the office for Guardiola’s Premier League leaders, with Jose Mourinho’s big-game mentality to shine through again after last week’s 3-1 win against Arsenal at the Emirates and City’s recent downturn in form to be exposed:
“I think Mourinho will find a way to stop them (Man City). I can’t see City keeping a clean sheet. Obviously team selection is important, but I think Lingard and Lukaku can get at this Manchester City defence.
“Huddersfield scored against them, they were very lucky last week, and their last three matches against have been 2-1, 2-1, 2-1, all with late winners.
“I don’t think Mourinho will sit back. They (Man United) have a bit of quality out wide. Ashley Young has been playing really well.
“City have had a lot of possession. But it’s not translating into goals. In their last four games, they’ve struggled to score. The goals have dried up a little bit for them.
“They started last season by winning their first ten games. They started again this season very, very hot. But in the last month, they haven’t been that impressive. And, we’ll see what Mourinho can do.”
Dunphy feels that Mourinho has the tactical ability to outmanoeuvre Guardiola, despite the latter’s superior record between the two historically:
“Mourinho’s not a likeable human being but he’s a terrific coach. And this is his game. I remember him going to Barcelona with Inter Milan in the Champions League. They had a man sent off – and this is when Barcelona were at their peak – and still they stopped them from scoring.
“So he knows how to do it. And that was a Pep team, incidentally.”
In this week’s episode of the Mixer Irish Football Podcast, We chat to former Limerick and Cork City striker John O’Flynn about his search for a new club, we discuss Robbie Brady’s injury and recap the latest LOI transfer news.