Derby Day is upon us again and emotions on both sides of the city could not be more confusing.
United need the points as they continue to fight for a top four place but many fans have said they would take a loss if it helps keep the Premier League out of the hands of Liverpool.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, however, will certainly not be entertaining such thoughts following the 4-0 hammering his side received at the hands of Everton at the weekend.
City will be feeling the pressure following the nervous victory against Spurs in Saturday’s early kick-off. United are the last top six club they face in the run in.
There is no denying that Guardiola’s side are better both on paper and current form – but when has that ever mattered in the Derby?
The Blues have a good record at Old Trafford in recent times, winning five and drawing one in their last seven visits – something the manager is keen to keep going.
“We did it in the past, I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow but we will do our best to do it again,” he said.
“The players know the importance of tomorrow. You always have to understand the situation. If you lost the last game 4-0 and being told something not good things about the performance, I know exactly what our reaction would be from our players, and that is what is going to happen tomorrow.
“We accept that, that is the challenge.”
Both managers’ team selections will be interesting, with Solskjaer possibly having one eye on the clash with Chelsea at the weekend and whether Pep sticks with young Phil Foden following his match winner against Spurs.
Speaking ahead of tonight’s clash, Guardiola said he was confident the youngster was ready for the occasion.
“He’s ready,” Guardiola said. “I don’t know the importance to be a Man City fan but he is going to help a lot and will be ready.
A hamstring injury from Saturday also sees Kevin De Bruyne return to the injured list for a third time this season – but Guardiola has a like-for-like replacement in David Silva.
Fernandinho will probably return to the starting line-up which will be a big boost for the Blues and it is always reassuring if Kompany starts – he has a history of scoring important goals against United.
Sterling, Aguero and Bernardo Silva are the likely starters in attack with Silva thriving in his current role. Sterling is in the form of his life and Aguero is always dangerous.
United will likely start very strong but if City get hold of the game the hosts could be in for a long night of chasing – much like the Barcelona game at home.
The only way City are guaranteed to be the first club to win back-to-back League titles since United in 2009 is to win every remaining game – and that starts with tonight’s 178th Manchester Derby.