Pep Guardiola was a happy man as his team dubbed their city rivals convincingly, thanks to braces from Kevin de Bruyne and Riyad Mahrez that accentuated Manchester United’s glaring chinks in an invisible rear-guard. The absence of three of their main players dented their spirits and there was very little that Rangnick could do about it.
Manchester United started the fixture with three of their primary players out of the contest. Ronaldo was sidelined with a hip injury while Luke Shaw and Raphael Varane were down with Covid. As the task fell on the shoulders of Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof, despite a decent out from the Swede, Maguire’s ailing woes continued.
A short story of the Manchester derby
The Belgian midfielder got the first of the night after Alex Telles was too slow to cut off the supply while the English center-back had no idea whatsoever about his surroundings. United came up with a strong counterblast as Jadon Sancho pranced his way past a phalanx of City defenders before hammering home the equalizer.
City got their noses ahead in very short succession as De Bruyne hammered home a clinical strike after an emphatic save from De Gea and another important block from the United defence. United was gifted with another golden opportunity to restore parity just ahead of the half-time when Jadon Sancho couldn’t keep his effort low.
Riyad Mahrez struck twice at the other side of the breather to compound United’s misery as the Devils went back into a shell in the second half with Ederson barely being probed.
Even on a night marked by humiliation and torment, if there was one United soul whose head should not hang low in dudgeon was their custodian, David de Gea.
The Spaniard kept on pulling one remarkable save after the other, underlining the majestic brilliance that he brings along with himself to the table. His aquiline reflexes bailed the visitors out on countless occasions.
From De Bruyne’s fizzling low effort to Mahrez’s stinging pile-driver, the flying Spaniard was equal to the task for every brilliant move that Manchester City came haunting United with.
After a night of desperation, defeat and humiliation, David de Gea took to his social media handles to craft an emotional response, a response that would once again highlight why he is one of the best that United has ever seen. It has often been talked about that he is probably the only one with the lost United spirit of the early decade in the 21st century.
Taking to Twitter, he quoted, “We will, one day, get this club back to where it deserves to be. Today was another bad moment in a difficult season but when we still have this shirt to defend we will not give up.”
Manchester has another tough contest coming up on Saturday as they take on Tottenham Hotspur and it is still unsure whether they will be replenished with the likes of Ronaldo, Varane and Shaw before the contest kicks off.
We will, one day, get this club back to where it deserves to be. Today was another bad moment in a difficult season but when we still have this shirt to defend we will not give up. 🔴 pic.twitter.com/dkHn98yHSnAdvertisement
— David de Gea (@D_DeGea) March 6, 2022