Tomorrow sees one of the biggest games of the season in the Premier League, with title favourites Manchester United and Manchester City going toe-to-toe in a mouthwatering clash that also presents a number of sub-plots, most notably seeing Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola renew their rivalry.
Whilst that battle has adorned the back pages, there’s plenty to watch on the field as the likes of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Paul Pogba, Sergio Aguero and Kevin De Bruyne come up against each other in a match that arguably displays the very best talent within England’s top-flight.
Ahead of the Manchester derby, we decided to make the very tough call of selecting a combined XI from the two wonderful squads and it certainly wasn’t easy, as a number of big-names players have missed out!
Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea kicks our team off between the sticks, getting the nod ahead of Claudio Bravo- who’s set to make his debut for the Citizens in one of the biggest games of the season following his arrival from Barcelona. The Champions League winner would get the nod for many but De Gea is one of the best goalkeepers in the division and has the experience in the Premier League that Chilean ace Bravo doesn’t yet boast.
In defence, it’s a fair split for the two Manchester sides with a duo of defenders from both sides of the divide. From the Citizens, Pablo Zabaleta gets the nod at right-back, arguably the weakest areas of both squads, whilst City skipper Vincent Kompany is an easy choice to slot into the centre.
Alongside the Belgian ace, new Manchester United man Eric Bailly makes our selection following his fantastic start to life in the Premier League. On the left Luke Shaw, who suffered a horrific injury last season, features and he should have a solid campaign ahead of him.
Midfield is where things start to get extremely tricky due to the immense depth both sides boast but, again, it’s two from each side. Kevin De Bruyne starred in the Bundesliga with Wolfsburg and has made a massive impact in his first year with Manchester City, whilst Raheem Sterling is back to his best under the guidance of Pep Guardiola- keeping the likes of David Silva and Nolito out of our squad.
From the red half of Manchester, it was impossible to overlook the most expensive player in the world, Paul Pogba. Whilst the French international has had a slow start in his return to the Premier League, he’ll certainly find his feet quickly and excel. The same can be said for fellow new signing, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, who impressed thoroughly with Borussia Dortmund last season.
In attack, we’re treated to two of the best strikers in the division. Questions were asked of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and whether he could still impress in English football but he’s erased any worries with an electric start to life in Manchester, scoring on his Premier League debut and netting three goals thus far.
Sergio Aguero completes the line-up but will unfortunately be missing for tomorrow’s match due to suspension. The Argentine ace is a firm-favourite at the City of Manchester Stadium for good reason, so he’ll certainly be missed when the two titans of English football clash tomorrow.
As mentioned, there’s a wealth of talent excluded from this squad with City stars Silva, John Stones, Leroy Sane, Ilkay Gundogan and more missing, whilst United don’t have captain Wayne Rooney, Chris Smalling, Antonio Valencia and others selected.
It’s not an easy task picking from these two insanely talented squads, so let us know your combined XI’s in the comments below and on Twitter using #TopEleven!