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Media Watch

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Press purr at prospect of Aguero & Jesus

STRIKE STARS: Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus

STRIKE STARS: Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus

It's finally here...

The eyes of the footballing world will be trained on the Etihad Stadium this evening for derby day, so there's plenty for the press to get their teeth into this morning.

First to the MEN's City reporter Stuart Brennan, who along with ex-Blues striker Paul Dickov has been contemplating the possibility of a Sergio Aguero and Gabriel Jesus strike force.

"Pep Guardiola can scare the life out of Manchester United – by playing Sergio Aguero AND Gabriel Jesus together," Brennan reckons.

"Jesus is battling to be fit for Thursday's Manchester derby after three months out with a broken metatarsal, while Aguero is winning his fight to recover from a knock he sustained in the FA Cup semi-final at the weekend.

"But if both are fit, Manchester City legend Paul Dickov believes it is a combination which would terrorise defences.

“'Pep did say that they can both play in the same team – Jesus has played in a withdrawn role, as a No. 10 for Brazil, and has played wide previously,' said the Scotland international."

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United boss Jose Mourinho gave his preview of the match on Wednesday and offered an insight into the current mindset of the Reds.

In quotes reported in the Daily Express, he said: “The fact that we are fighting for important things still is a good motivation to keep people together, to prompt people to make an extra effort.

“The training session started at 3pm today but when I arrived here at 10.30am some players were already here, taking care of little details, taking care of their recovery, going to the swimming pool and taking care of their body. That is motivation.

“Maybe some opponents look at us with different eyes because we don’t have Zlatan, Paul, Marcos, Mata, Jones and Smalling.

“But they are not stupid, they are not naïve and they know that we are going to give them a fight.

“Pep is very intelligent. I know their players are experienced, and I also know they know it will not be easy."

Man City v Man Utd: Key info

Finally Guardiola has also had his say on a United player and given praise to Michael Carrick.

The BBC report: "Pep Guardiola has called Manchester United's Michael Carrick 'one of the best midfielders I've ever seen'.

"The Manchester City boss said the former England player, 35, is at the same level as Spanish World Cup winners Xavi Alonso and Sergio Busquets.

"Carrick, who joined United in 2006 from Tottenham, has made 31 appearances for the club this season.

"'He's one of the best holding midfielders I've ever seen in my life, by far,'" Guardiola said.

We'll be back same time, same place tomorrow for all the reaction to the match!

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Picture Special

Derby eve training at the CFA