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United to put City in their place

LONDON, September 18-Manchester United have made a habit of putting would-be challengers in their place over the years but it will be with particular relish that they seek to to cut their neighbours down to size this weekend.WAYNE_ROONEY_1_Manchester City’s flaunting of their newly-acquired wealth appears to have got under the skin of everyone at Old Trafford from Sir Alex Ferguson down, providing an intriguing backdrop to the most eagerly awaited derby clash in years.

In their public statements, Ferguson’s players have savoured the prospect of pricking City’s bubble of self-confidence.

"They want to show people they are the kings of the city but they are not there yet," said Patrice Evra, United’s French defender. "We have to make sure that doesn’t happen."

It would be surprising however if there was not a bit of trepidation in there as well, particularly in the wake of City’s impressive 4-2 win over Arsenal last weekend, which extended their perfect start to the season to four matches.

The derby may have been billed as an important benchmark for the potential of Mark Hughes’s side to break into English football’s Champions League elite, but it will also serve as a reference point for assessing the impact of Cristiano Ronaldo’s departure on United’s ability to win the kind of matches that define seasons.

City’s prospects have not been helped by the fact they could be without over 100 million pounds of striking talent at Old Trafford with Emmanuel Adebayor suspended following his stamp on Robin van Persie last weekend, Robinho and Roque Santa Cruz injured and Carlos Tevez struggling to recover from a knee injury in time to face his former team-mates.

United’s main concern is over the availability of the increasingly injury-prone Rio Ferdinand.

The lunchtime encounter at Old Trafford is one of two pivotal derby encounters on Sunday with league leaders Chelsea entertaining Tottenham later in the day.

Tottenham’s own aspirations of breaking into the top four were put into perspective by the ease with which United overturned an early deficit to win 3-1 at White Hart Lane last weekend, but manager Harry Redknapp does not anticipate morale collapsing in the wake of that setback.

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"We played well, got the early goal, but like all champions they came back strongly," he said. "It’s not a case of sharpening up (for Chelsea). For an hour we played as well as we have all season."

Chelsea will have Didier Drogba firing on all cylinders after the Ivory Coast striker sat out the midweek win over FC Porto because of a European ban.

After defeats by both Manchester clubs, Arsenal will seek to put their domestic campaign back on track by building on a stirring Champions League fightback in Liege in midweek.

Andrey Arshavin and Robin van Persie, who both missed the 3-2 win in Belgium, are in line for comebacks when Wigan visit the Emirates on Saturday.

Liverpool travel to West Ham on Saturday evening with star striker Fernando Torres having recognised that the Reds have very little room for error after losing two of their opening three league matches.

"We are recovering the confidence now after winning three games in a row," the Spain forward said.

"We have to keep on like this, but also improve. If we lose points in the coming weeks it will be very difficult to stay at the top come January and February."

Elsewhere on Saturday, Portsmouth travel to Aston Villa still looking for their first point of the season, Bolton entertain Stoke, Sunderland are at Burnley and Hull host Birmingham in what, even at this early stage of the campaign, looks like an important relegation battle.

Australia defender Lucas Neill, signed by Everton this week, may be involved against one of his former clubs, Blackburn, on Sunday, which also sees Wolves entertain Fulham.

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  1. isaac

    September 22, 2009 at 3:54 pm

    that was an interesting tuko juu tu sana!now there is no doubts,if you want classic football,go to old trafford!!!

  2. Juma

    July 13, 2012 at 8:59 am

    Maybe just a correction, its not guaranteed that a loving husband/boyfriend will make a good father, or vice versa.

    • Ann Irungu

      July 15, 2012 at 3:31 am

      I agree Juma,..same way that NOT all Great DADs / Fathers Make Good Husbands….talk of twisted scenarios why can’t things just simply balance out !!!!!!!

  3. ndoloh

    July 13, 2012 at 11:36 am

    Lovely article….but wrong choice of photos

  4. Carolynar

    July 13, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    There are those who respect their mums en all but still end up being the worst dads!

    • Dads House Ed Center

      July 25, 2012 at 11:52 am

      That is because they have frequently been raised by a single mother who denied the father access to the child, or did not know who the father was. In the 80s and early 90s, 60% of divorced fathers were denied access to their children by gatekeeper mothers. Those boys grew up believing that a father was unimportant as “A Village Can Raise A Child”.

  5. Naomi

    July 13, 2012 at 2:31 pm

    Nope , don’t think so. My DH showed none of this qualities but he makes the awesomest dad now….

    • Naomi

      July 13, 2012 at 2:32 pm

      well, I didnt mean none…I meant had few of the qualities…. 😀

  6. Saliva Vic

    July 31, 2012 at 6:15 am

    Dang! I guess fatherhood isn’t in the cards for me. I’m a goofball but none of the rest.

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