Yes they have all been in the papers or online at some point over the last few weeks and you'd have been stupid to take much notice of any of them. City now go 3 points clear at the top of the table after the current Premier League champions, self proclaimed biggest club in the world, and perennial title challengers lose two games on the bounce. a rather embarrassing 2-3 at home to then Bottom of the league Blackburn Rovers and 3-0 away to Newcastle United.
So who, pray tell, 'comes good' in the second half of the season? Who seems to be crumbling under the pressure of the title challenge?
How about instead of hearing about how City have choked at chances to go further ahead of United, why haven't I heard "United fail to take advantage of City's mistakes and go ahead of them in the league"? Because however you look at it, that is exactly what has happened.
The best bit of this is that Rio Ferdinand has said that the 1-6 mullering at Old Trash-yard to their insignificant 'noisy neighbours' has actually helped their season!
"I'll be honest, and it pains me to say it, but it was probably one of the best things to happen to us." Camel face is quoted as saying.
You know what Rio? I actually agree with you. It certainly was the best thing to happen to United in my lifetime at least. And if helping their season means they stay in 2nd place, as well as lose at home to the bottom of the league then by all means I think we should help their season again on Sunday. Maybe they would have a run of form that would see them drop out of the top 4 all together if we help them enough.
Of course I expect to see a little more effort put into the derby game, despite so many United fans telling City that the FA Cup means nothing, it's turned into a Mickey Mouse trophy. What more would we expect from a set of fans from a club that willingly dropped out of the FA Cup, the oldest and most famous domestic club cup competition in the world, to play half way across the world in a newly formed money spinning world tournament that still hasn't really taken off in the eyes of football fans.
Then again they also said the League Cup was a Noddy tournament too, but look at the effort they put into making sure City didn't win it 2 years ago! I guess the Premier League will be just another unimportant distraction if they don't win it this season.
Scrap that, I know exactly what their fans will say "Come back when you've won 19", "You'll never be bigger than United" etc. etc. Don't they know we don't actually care what is said? Statements like that don't demoralise the players or the fans. It just gives us something to throw back at them at some point in the future.
I wont go into the list of ridiculous one liners they come out with, but the majority of them centre around City "never" achieving a certain goal. Well the thing is, never is a long time, a very long time and several of their predictions have already been shown to be idiotic at best and several more are on the way to being dismissed.
I fully expect to hear "Losing like that to Newcastle was just Fergie playing mind games" at some point before kick off on Sunday. No seriously, that's the kind of level of delusion we're dealing with here.
I'm not stupid enough to say that City are going to hammer United, and I am not stupid enough to take heed of anything that a United fan says in general, never mind in a build up to a derby. What I will say though that if City show the same grit and determination they showed against Liverpool then United had best get ready for one of their toughest ever derbies.
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