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Manchester City v Sheffield United: Head To Head

The Stats Ahead of the Final Match of 2023

Sheffield United v Manchester City - Premier League Photo by Rich Linley - CameraSport via Getty Images

Manchester City will be looking to go into 2024 with victory against a struggling Sheffield United side. The blues got their first win since bringing the Club World Cup to Manchester with victory over Everton in midweek, and they’ll be hoping to gain their first home victory since a 6-1 hammering of Bournemouth in November.

United are still looking for their first away win of the season and it’s a tall order to wish for that to arrive at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. Stranger things have happened though, and City will need to be wary of the threat posed by the visitors who are currently fighting relegation.

There’s a long history between these two sides, with Saturday’s match being the 61st meeting between the two in Manchester. Let’s take a look at the stats to see if there are any clues as to how Saturday’s match may go.

Blues Look To Continue Unbeaten Run

City are currently on an unbeaten run at home to the Blades of 11 matches. The last time United won at City was back in 1987, when David White and Ian Brightwell scored for City. However, that was only the Blades second win at Maine Road since 1930, when they beat the blues 4-0. Since then, City have won 23 of the following 33 matches, losing just twice.

Overall, City have won 33 of the 60 matches played in Manchester, with United claiming victory just 14 times. This was aided by City winning just two and losing eight of their first ten matches at home to the Blades, between March 1893 and September 1911.

Goals an Issue for United

The Blades have scored just five goals away from home in the Premier League this season. Put that with the fact that they haven’t scored at City since 1991, they may have a real problem on Saturday.

The blues beat United 3-2 at Maine Road that day and United have failed to score in their nine subsequent visits. However, City will be wary that five of those games ended 0-0 and, given their recent record of drawing matches, the faithful will want an early goal to rule out a goalless stalemate.

City did thrash the Blades 6-0 in 1999 to break the cycle of goalless draws, and later recorded 2-0 and 1-0 victories over the South Yorkshire side.

In total, United have scored 78 goals from all their matches played at City, an average of just 1.27 goals per game. City’s goal record is a little better. They have scored 113 overall since their first meeting in 1893, an average of 1.66 goals per match.

However, there have been eight matches that have ended 0-0, with three successive stalemates between March 1994 and March 1998.

Clean Sheets a Rarity

Keeping the opposition out has proved to be difficult for both sides over the years, so Ederson needn’t feel guilty if the blues concede on Saturday, which is the norm for the first half of the season these days.

City have kept 19 clean sheets in total, with United keeping City out just 15 times. Between December 195o and April 1970, the two played ten games with neither keeping the other out. 44 goals were scored in total, with City hitting five in three matches, beating the Blades 5-3, 5-2 and 5-2. United ended this little run with a 1-0 win in March 1974.

Some Hefty Wins For The Blues

City have recorded several high scores against the Blades, with the most recent being a 6-0 thrashing of United in August 1999. They have also hit five on three occasions and put four past the visitors five times.

United’s biggest win came in the form of a 4-0 victory in October 1910, repeating the feat in September 1930. They also won 4-2 at Maine Road in November 1925. United have also scored three goals on seven occasions, however, they have only won three of those matches. The others games ended twice with a 3-3 draw and a 4-3 win for the blues.

One For the Superstitious

We use this section of our head-to-head solely to scare the superstitious, mainly for our own amusement. Sadly, there’s not much to frighten them with for this fixture.

The two teams have met eight times in December, with City winning seven to United’s one. They have never met on the 30th of the month, however, four years ago, they met at the Etihad Stadium on the 29th and City ran out 2-0 winners. United did have an opening goal chalked out for offside but that won’t be enough to get the worriers worried.

Fun Fact

In January 1991, City welcomed Sheffield United to Maine Road and won 2-0. However, the match was more notable for one of the fastest yellow cards in history.

Former Wimbledon midfielder Vinnie Jones (who else) lunged in on Peter Reid just five seconds into the match and was cautioned by the referee. Inevitably, Jones was sent off in the second half for another lunge at Reid.

Everything points to a City win on Saturday, but how will that match actually go? Join us on Twitter (X or whatever it’s now called) as Saul brings live coverage of the match.