Manchester City playmaker, Kevin De Bruyne, has said he wishes Paul Pogba was available for Sunday’s Derby, as he enjoys coming up against the best players.
Pogba will be starting a three-match ban after his red card in Manchester United’s 3-1 win at Arsenal for a challenge on Héctor Bellerín.
The United midfielder said last week that he hoped City players would suffer injuries, to help United’s title push but De Bruyne rejected the idea that karma was at work.
“I don’t believe in that,” De Bruyne said.
“I’m a very straightforward guy. If someone believes it is karma then OK. Everyone has their right to their opinion. I don’t want anyone to get injured. It’s a competition, you want to play against the best teams and the best players.
“I don’t care [what he says]. He can say whatever he wants. We just have to be focused on whatever we’re doing. He’s a massive player. I know him a little bit. He’s unbelievable. He took a red card and that’s the way it goes – you have injuries and suspensions.”
If City win at Old Trafford they will move 11 points clear at the top. De Bruyne said: “It means we [would] almost have a four-game advantage. It’s a good gap but doesn’t mean anything. Football goes very quick. It’s a busy two months when things can change but the way we’re going is good and we need to continue that.
“United are one of the biggest clubs in the country. They’re a massive team, they want to win the title. They spent a lot of money, like a lot of the big teams. They will be up for it and we will be up for it. Hopefully it’ll be a good game. We’ll play the same there. We never change. We try to do the things that we are good at. That gives us the best chance to win.”