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"I don't feel the need to laugh at City, I just want to beat them."

- Justin Moorhouse, comedian 

07/04/2013 21:57
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Playing for laughs

Manchester funny men Justin Moorhouse and Jason Manford have been trading jokes and quips ahead of the latest derby between United and City.

Moorhouse, who appeared in TV comedy series Phoenix Nights, is an avid Red while popular stand-up comedian Manford supports the Blues. From reading their words in United Review, the official programme for Monday's match, it's clear the game means a lot to both men.

"When I was little, derbies weren't as poisonous," explained Moorhouse. "It was a game I looked forward to, to be honest. When I was a young United fan, we were both pretty rubbish although we tended to have the upper hand in the derby.

"For me, the derbies are too tense now. Over the last 20 years, the derby has been City's chance to get one over United but it's been about local pride not points that could win or lose you the title. It's been about bragging rights. Now, though, they're crucial games in the title race.

"I don't feel the need to laugh at City, I just want to beat them. I don't want to see them relegated again. I'd rather they stay in the Premier League but finish second to us every season.

"I do get mistaken for a City fan sometimes because I played a City fan in Phoenix Nights. But people don’t realise I was acting. Anthony Hopkins doesn’t eat people’s brains, you know. Sylvester Stallone isn’t a prize-fighting boxer. And I’m NOT a City fan!"

As for Manford, he was keen to crack some jokes at the league leaders' expense ahead of the Old Trafford showdown.

"Obviously, Manchester is Blue," he insisted. "Although saying that, true to stereotype, I do live in Stockport with all other Manchester City fans.

"I used to say that United fans are like rats: you're only ever three metres away from one of them. And I used to get heckled by United supporters but now I just don't play that

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