The biggest game of the year in the English Premier League kicks off this afternoon with first-place Manchester United taking on arch-rival Manchester City at the Etihad Stadium (3pm, ESPN).
United enters the match with a three-point lead over City, but the Citizens can jump into first place with a victory. United's recent slip-ups have let City back in the race, and the return to the starting lineup of Carlos Tevez has provided City with a major boost in the stretch run.
SBI will be providing live commentary on today's big match so please feel free to follow along with the action here. As always, you are welcome to share your thoughts, opinions and some play-by-play in the comments section below.
Enjoy the action (Commentary is after the jump):
I don’t think that the possession difference (I agree with your 60% Illmatic) had as much to do with personnel as assignments. United was gonna bunker and try to steal a goal and SAF put the team out there he thought would do that best.
I’m happy that it didn’t work out for him but their lack of possession wasn’t due to any failings of Park or Giggs but instead due to the roles assigned to them.
Yeah but before Tevez came off for De Jong is was around 60% for City.
Stuart Holden disagrees.
comfy with Yaya, definitely.
YaYa MOTM. vacuums up so many balls, releases players, dangerous runs, constant motion
huge game today
City 53 % vs United 47% possesion.
Not really. All those big teams are like that.
United is like Goliath and no one loves Goliath.
Which is why no one notices any more.
It’s like one the boy who cried wolf or the fact that Tom Brady expects a flag every time someone breathes on him. Who cares?
Every really good team that has ever played has been solid defensively.
Won 2-1. 3 points back of Braga with 2 to go-@ Porto on Saturday. Braga playing 11th place team out of 16.
Barry was outstanding the most under appreciated English player.
That game was predictable. I knew it would turn out like that as soon as I saw Giggs and Park starting. Giggs and Park have done well in big games for United but, they shouldn’t be starting big games next season.When they are starting against elite teams we are ceding the possession battle.
Historic game, maybe, but I thought it was boring. Probably wouldn’t if I was invested in one side or the other.
Classic United garbage at the end. 5 mins of extra time? For what? Rooney flopped in the 1st half to get Kompany booked. Wasn’t he just whining last week about Drogba flopping?
It’s Kompany or Yaya for me. Yaya is the energizer bunny. He’s more athletic than LeBron.
Hey man, we can’t always agree on everything. Where’s the fun in that? 😀
Ok, I’ll say that MOTM is quite difficult. VK had the goal but Kun, Nasri, Zabaleta, and (!) Barry have been amazing.
+100000. I know i’ve given you a hard time in the past, but you’ve been spot on this thread. Cheers, and happy days because United don’t benefit from their cheating and whining.
Word. That is absolutely ridiculous. Clearly an attempt to give United time to get back into it. 0 goals and 0 injuries in the half? So pathetic.
Haha and if you need more questions about officials trying to save United, 5 minutes extra time in a half with no injuries and no goals.
Wow Nasri could have just lost the title for City if United manages to equalize.
Has the ball with nobody on in, 4 yards out. And instead of just kicking it in he tries to dribble through guys running from the side.
5 minutes Criminal.
And the crap continues. Phil Jones just tackles Nasri, and gives up a free kick.
He then proceeds to look directly at the official and yells “F*** You!”
And the referee does nothing.
United needs dive to get a Penalty, Ashley Young comes on.
Micah Richards for David Silva. I think we have our answer.
NOW Mancini has gone all D. 🙂
United starting to do their whining and cheap shot routine. And this is why nobody likes them.
Yeah I loved that. Rooney and Scholes cry for cards more than anyone I can think of in the EPL.
Hell, de Jong didn’t even deserve a card (surprisingly)
Danny Welbeck ignores the ball and intentionally runs right across a tackle to get fouled.
Sir Alex has a go at Mancini. And I mean physically, the staff had to separate them.
OH It’s fine when Shrek and Scholes cry for cards, but Toure does and ‘We don’t need that’, say the announcers.
Yaya Toure might have the hardest shot I’ve ever seen. He just barely moves his leg and uncorks a rocket.
I don’t think you can say it’s all defense yet. We’ll see what the second sub is. 🙂
that was an ugly one.
This has been a very clean game. Kind of refreshing.
Shockingly it’s a United player that almost breaks a leg.
Nasty, nasty tackle.
Oh man, here it goes. Mancini is going defensive. This never ends well.
de Jong comin on. Leg breakin time.
That doesn’t mean I think this is over, at all. We’ll see how City adjust to Sir Alex’s sub and switch to (presumably) 4-4-2
This is a tactical coming of age for Mancini. I have always thought he was capable and has coached some great squads well, but today is different.
He has clearly set up the team to focus on the wings and this avoids the ‘Barca/Arsenal problem’ of attacks dying on a wall in the center of defense. It has been the perfect attack so far to go after a somewhat bunkering ManU.
Nice corner. And the announcers always seem to think it is some egregious mistake by the defense when a team scores on a corner. That was a great, sharp delivery and Kompany found the seam. The ball cleared the defender by about 4 inches. What could they have done?
great GO CITY
Even though City has the lead at halftime and could win this game. Their last two games away at Newcastle and a fighting for their life QPR. City have a lot of work to do if they go on to win this match.
Lol how do you leave Kompany unmarked on a corner? He’s huge.
Did the official really just tell City players that they can’t touch Rooney? I cannot believe I just saw that.
That’s just a really bad decision from the official. It wasn’t a yellow card to boot, and now it forces City’s best defensive player to play cautiously now.
I have a bad feeling about this game with Park and Giggs starting today.
Obviously not as important, but Sporting Lisbon has a HUGE game today that could give them a truly improbable Champions League slot. They’re 6 points back of Braga with a game in hand(today) and a game against Braga on the last day of the season. They were something like 15+ points back of 3rd a month and a half ago.
Even better, despite the fact Braga has a +9 GD, the tiebreaker in Portugal appears to be head to head then head to head goal differential then head to head away goals so if SCP win today and maintain the -3 point difference going into the last game, they would only need a 1-0 win or a multigoal win to qualify for the CL. Tough game against Porto though next week.