Manchester Derby: Player Ratings

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Joe Hart: 7 – Willy Caballero has no chance at becoming Manchester City’s number one now, given Joe Hart’s solid recent form, and Caballero’s soft game against Newcastle. Hart made good work of the few saves he needed to make, especially from Van Persie’s mid-second-half shot. For large periods, United’s possession bore no fruit, leaving Hart with little to do.

Pablo Zabaleta: 7 – Tenacious, carrying all the drive and desire of a born winner, Pablo Zabaleta had little difficulty with a roaming Angel Di Maria — who often drifted out onto his flank — or Adnan Januzaj, who did little before being subbed off. Sometimes a little too eager to jump into tackles, but was solid, as ever.

Vincent Kompany: 8 – The true definition of a leader if there ever was one. Held Robin Van Persie in his pocket for a whole 90 minutes, and almost single-handedly dragged City through a final fifteen minutes during which United wouldn’t stop pressing. Immense display by the captain, barring a nutmeg from Wayne Rooney which nearly led to a goal (Kompany will thank Demi and Hart for getting him out of that one).

City’s captain, Vincent Kompany chases Michael Carrick to – not for the first time in the game – regain possession.

Martin Demichelis: 7 – I was unsure as to whether Demichelis was the right choice to face a pacy United side, given Mangala’s obvious abundance of speed. Yet in big games, with such weight resting upon all players involved, I couldn’t help but have a vision of the new guy falling on his arse for 90 minutes.

Martin Demichelis always exhibits his experience at the back, and he mostly did so during the derby. Like Zaba, perhaps his desire to win trumps his judgement, as he makes the odd rash tackle. I didn’t even notice his ever-reported lack of pace.

Gael Clichy: 8 – I admit that I was slightly annoyed when Kolarov limped off minutes before kick off, as Clichy was pretty mediocre against West Ham. It seems that Clichy performs better in the bigger games, he put in a great performance.


Yaya Toure: 8 – Okay, I admit that he actually played pretty well. What made him so good (in this game) was the fact that he did not have to be a defensive midfielder, given United’s shortage in midfield after Smalling’s red card. He had room to power into, and most importantly, time to pick a pass. His passing also paid off greatly in City’s goal, when he slid an exquisite ball into another great performer, Gael Clichy.

Fernando: 7 – Definitely solidified City’s central midfield, and allowed Yaya to push forward later. Strength in midfield was key to dominating United, particularly when the Red Devils were a man light.

Jesus Navas: 6.5 – There are some games in which Navas really performs, such as those against teams which are lethargic and slow, as they find it incredibly hard to deal with his pace. However, in big games, where teams are 100 percent ready and are tactically sound, he struggles, as they can block him out. He was able to drift past Luke Shaw quite a few times, but his final ball was always too late to make it to the right player.

Did well to hit the post after getting past Shaw, and did cause a few problems, but I just think he waits too late to play a pass for it to come off.

James Milner: 8 – Milner is a player who always performs in big games, no matter where he’s utilized. In this match, he was played out on the left wing, where he seemed to play like a second central midfielder, winger and wing back. He matched every player he came up against, with pure tenacity and desire.


Stevan Jovetic: 7 – Contributed more to the building up of the play rather than finishing anything, which was great when United were put a man down. Played some really smart balls to break down United’s somewhat weak defense.

Sergio Aguero: 8.5 – Another incredibly smart game from City’s star man. If it wasn’t for David De Gea (or the referee’s terrible decision making) he would have had a hat trick for sure. In order to expertly guide Clichy’s cross past United’s keeper, he made a movement which was so subtle, Paddy McNair didn’t even notice. The move presented him with a few yards to spin and finish.

Sergio Aguero celebrates putting his team ahead and reaching the top of the goalscoring table, with 10 goals to his name in the league.

He doesn’t look like getting injured anytime soon (knock wood), and so could retain his current spot on top of the Premier League scorers list til May.


Fernandinho: 7 – Brought on to keep City ahead as United continued to attack, and it worked. The extra man in midfield gave City more security against a large scale United attack.

Edin Dzeko: 6.5 – Came on for Stevan Jovetic in the hope — no doubt — that he would smash in a goal or two and bring the game out of United’s reach. He didn’t really contribute in that aspect, but did well to bring down City’s many clearances come the end of the game.