Manchester City boss Pep Guardiola says he expects the best Manchester United side to turn in Wednesday’s derby.
Manchester United form has dipped in recent games with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer coming under pressure having lost six of their last eight matches in all competitions.
“I expect the best United tomorrow, I am sure,” Guardiola said in his pre-match conference ahead of the game.
“They are bright. Football players try to do their best and tomorrow is going to happen. We prepare for their strong points and weak points.”
Manchester City went from 1974 to 2008 without winning a game at Old Trafford but they travel to United on Wednesday having won five of their last seven visits.
City manager Pep Guardiola does not feel such form reversal will have any impact on this meeting, but he accepts it means the Blues have no need to fear a trip across town.
“I don’t make theories about what happened in the past. Every game is completely different,” he said.
“The fact is this club grew a lot in the last decade, so it is not scary to go there.
“Before that, it was maybe more difficult. The players Manchester City have had in the last decade made this game a little bit more equal.”
Guardiola also reveals that Kevin de Bruyne will miss the derby due to injury.
“I don’t know. We will see. It is a muscular problem and we will see in the next days, but tomorrow he is not available.”
“Yeah, unfortunately, this season it has been one injury, then another and another. He had two or three muscular problems,” Guardiola said.
“In England, you don’t have time to make a preparation. You play every three days and that is not the best way.
“Now he has to pay attention to the little details, to see if he can play one or two more games this season and next season make a good pre-season so he can be safe, to be fit.”
About the pressure on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer with his side having gone on a poor run of form since the former United striker was handed the manager’s job permanently.
“He came back here after being a former player. He knows everything. It is an advantage.
“Everybody needs time,” Guardiola added.
“In our world, our position, I am close to Solskjaer. I understand perfectly his position. We feel alone and that is why I understand completely his position.
“It happens to all the managers around the world. That is the reality. I understand him perfectly. I support him.”