Manchester United captain Wayne Rooney was in buoyant mood ahead of the cluba s big game on Sunday when the Red Devils take on cross town rivals Manchester City. On a five-game winning run, United are, for the first time in years, going into a game against City as the favourites.
Apart from a humiliating 0-3 defeat at Old Trafford last year, United have also lost the two games preceding it. In total, the club have conceded 11 goals while scoring only two in the last three derbies to have been contested at The Theater of Dreams. In fact, the cluba s last win over their a noisy neighborsa came back in December 2012 when a late Robin Van Persie strike at The Etihad Stadium gave United the win.
In the four derbies since, the club have suffered at the hands of their cross town rivals, losing all four games while conceding eight goals and scoring just one.
Despite that however, Rooney, who is the highest goalscorer in Manchester derbies, believes United will be much better prepared this time out and has also emphasized on what the game means to him.
“I think it’s a very important game for Manchester United and Manchester City… for the fans and, for me, it’s a massive game of pride,” Wayne told ManUtd.com and MUTV when asked what the derby means to him. “You play for Man United, you want to win these derby games.”
The 29-year-old has been in tremendous form in recent weeks, scoring goals for fun both for United and England. With a five-game winning run to fall back upon, Rooney was beaming with confidence ahead of the derby.
“We want to give United fans something to smile about when they go to work on Monday morning, we want them to be the ones to be able to give out the banter to Manchester City fans at work.”
Louis Van Gaala s side have defeated the likes of Tottenham Hotspur at home and Liverpool away in that five-game winning run and are second on the form table behind Arsenal. Looking forward to the game, Van Gaal also seemed to have confidence in his side as he said that it is a a differenta team to the one that went to The Etihad Stadium earlier in the season.
Citya s fortunes, however, have suffered a massive dip and have only managed winning six out of their last 16 games in all competitions. Manuel Pellegrinia s men, in fact, have lost four consecutive games on the road and Old Trafford is perhaps the toughest place to in the Premier League at the moment.