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Sky Blue News: Derby Banter, Gundo Speculation, and More...

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Manchester City v Manchester United - Premier League Photo by Simon Stacpoole/Offside/Offside via Getty Images

Manchester City are focused on the derby on Sunday, and we at Sky Blue News are focused on all the latest news in the buildup. Catch up right here to be ready for City v United.

Manchester United Now ‘Mind The Gap’ To Manchester City - Zak Garner-Purkis - Forbes

A Forbes feature on the reversal of fortunes in Manchester.

Just under a decade after the Maine Road win and four years since the Middle Eastern money started pouring into City’s coffers the blue side of Manchester was celebrating winning the Premier League, pipping United on the final day by goal difference.

United fought back to reclaim the title the following year, but it was to prove the Red Devils’ last hurrah, they have not won the league since.

On September 22 2022, United posted a $130 million loss, the third largest in the history of the Premier League. Revenue, at least, was up to $633 million although it remains behind the 2019 high of $681 million.

A demonstration of how the playing field has been leveled is shown by City’s most recent financials where a modest $2.6 million profit was earned off a $618 million record turnover.

The chasm, which was so painfully wide back in 2002, is gone and, long term, it looks like United is in danger of being left behind.

How Derby Day Has Changed For Manchester City Fans - Manc Pete - Bitter and Blue

Pete reminisces on derby days of old and how it has all changed.

Back in the day, we were happy with a point against the reds. Some fans won’t agree with that statement, but any team going to Old Trafford in those days would be happy to take something away from them. As realist supporters, we knew we couldn’t compete, so we settled for thwarting them at any available opportunity. But, in the last 10-12 years, we’ve looked forward to derby day for different reasons and on Sunday, we go into the match with confidence that we can win it again.

How times have changed.

From going into this particular match with hope that is gradually crushed over a 90-minute period, we now face these matches with high expectations, the anticipation of three points and bragging rights as the blues walk away victorious. In the 90s, United fans used to view derbies as just another game, while for us it was a chance to put one over them. The tables are now turned and that’s the way many United fans feel now as they go into the derby.

But, with the change in anticipation comes a little apprehension from the faithful. It’s the same feeling United fans had in the 90s and early 00s. The blues, as United used to, go into the match as favourites to win and while the confidence is high, there’s also an air of nervousness amongst the faithful.


KDB is set to feature in his 11th Manchester derby, and he has made an indelible mark.

De Bruyne has featured in one of England’s greatest rivalries on 13 occasions. That includes 10 matches in the Premier League and three in the Carabao Cup.

His first appearance against Manchester United came for Chelsea in 2013 but it was October 2015 when he made his Manchester derby debut.

Of those 13 games, only one has been a substitute appearance. He has totalled 1076 minutes against United since joining City.

Man City can repeat Jack Grealish tactic to make Manchester United statement - Joe Bray - Manchester Evening News

Could the Grealish role be the key to victory against the Red Devils?

Sunday’s derby with Manchester United, then, is the latest chance Grealish has to show why he is actually doing just fine at City. And he only needs to look back at his breakthrough performance in the last Etihad derby to take inspiration.

When the 4-1 win last season is looked back on, Kevin De Bruyne’s double and Riyad Mahrez’s lovely goal will be the lasting memories. What will likely be forgotten is that it was arguably Grealish’s best performance of the season.

Trusted with the left-wing role after a quiet start to life at City, Grealish turned up with a performance that showed he was ready to embrace Pep Guardiola’s tactics and a more conservative role for him than he was given at Aston Villa.

No decision on future of Manchester City's first-team star with contract expiring in 2023 - Freddie Pye - City Xtra

Ilkay is currently playing in the last season of his current deal. What might the future hold for the Captain?

Becoming one of Pep Guardiola’s first signings as Manchester City manager, Ilkay Gundogan has played an integral role in the implementation of the Catalan boss’ successful style of play.

Despite age not being on his side, his importance to the present-day City squad could not be any greater.

The former Borussia Dortmund star cemented his place in Manchester City club history with his final day antics last season, to secure the side a fourth Premier League title in the last five years.

Gundogan’s late brace of goals against Aston Villa ensured Manchester City came from two goals behind to win 3-2 on a dramatic afternoon in the North-West.

But despite his integral role to the current squad, and the relatively low amount of options at Pep Guardiola’s disposal in central midfield, a new update would suggest that the player remains in limbo when it comes to knowing where he will be playing his football from next season.

Barcelona ‘keeping tabs on Ilkay Gundogan situation’ - Ben Knapton - Sports Mole

Of course, the Blaugranes are already linked with a move for Gundo.

If the Catalan giants are unable to prise Bernardo Silva away from the Etihad, it is claimed that they will instead turn their attention to his teammate Gundogan.

Man City are supposedly after a record fee of £89m if they are to part ways with Silva, and Barcelona will only consider a move for Gundogan if a move for the Portugal international falls through.

The report adds that Gundogan is yet to make a decision on his future, but the Premier League champions will entertain offers if it becomes clear that he has no desire to remain at the club.

World Cup 2022: Haaland, Salah & the megastars who won’t be going to Qatar - James Westwood -

And finally... A look at some of the bigger names we won’t be seeing on football’s biggest stage, including our superstar striker.

Haaland was already considered among the best strikers in Europe, but his stock has skyrocketed since his £51 million ($54m) move to City from Borussia Dortmund in the summer.

The Norwegian has instantly silenced the critics that suggested he would struggle to make an impact in the Premier League, scoring 11 goals in his first seven appearances.

He has also struck three times in the Champions League, becoming the fastest man to reach 25 career goals in the competition in the process, but it’s the 22-year-old’s international record that best illustrates his superstar standing.

Haaland has hit 21 goals in 22 games for Norway, who have only featured in three World Cups, with their last appearance coming in 1998.

Norway’s prospects have improved recently due to Haaland’s presence, but he missed a large chunk of their latest World Cup qualification campaign due to injury, and they ended up third in their group behind the Netherlands and Turkey.

There you have it. Enjoy your Friday Cityzens, and stay with us for more right here at Bitter and Blue.