Form guide: Manchester United go into the derby in a positive frame of mind, following the 3-0 and 2-0 wins over Olympiacos and West Ham respectively within the space of the last few days. City will also be in a buoyant mood, having beaten Hull and Fulham in the Barclays Premier League since their exits from both the FA Cup and the Champions League earlier this month.
Ins and outs: Nemanja Vidic serves the second of the two-game suspension he accrued for his second red card of the season, against Liverpool. Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and Rio Ferdinand were all absent from the squad for Saturday’s win at West Ham, but Michael Carrick acquitted himself superbly in central defence alongside Phil Jones and may be an option there once again. A knee injury has side-lined Robin van Persie for four to six weeks. Vincent Kompany will be available for City after his own one-match ban, but Sergio Aguero has, according to Blues’ boss Manuel Pellegrini, “no chance” of playing due to his hamstring injury. Defender Matija Nastasic is also misses out through injury.
Betting: United are priced at 3.50 to take all three points on offer by bwin, the club’s official betting partners, who make City favourites at 2.05 while the draw is 3.40.
Last meeting: The Reds never got going at Etihad Stadium in September, slipping to a 4-1 defeat in which Wayne