Manchester City v Manchester United: Six of the best Manchester derby goals
A resurgent Manchester United make the short trip to take on their rivals Manchester City this Sunday, with the reigning Premier League champions yet to hit top gear this season. City won both meetings between the sides in the Premier League last term and Erik ten Hag will be keen to deliver a statement win, the Red Devils having taken 12 points from four games. Pep Guardiola’s men have won seven league games in a row in front of their own fans, though, so something will have to give at the Etihad Stadium for this titanic tussle between the rivals.
Neutral football fans will be hoping for drama, with this game having produced some belting goals. Here, we pick out six of the best Manchester derby goals from recent history.
Ryan Giggs – City 2-3 United, April 1996
A five-goal thriller is mainly remembered for Giggs’ brilliant rifled finish for United. Eric Cantona collected the ball close to the halfway line and slipped a pass through to Giggs in the left channel, with the Wales winger never considering providing a return ball. As he entered City’s box, Giggs thumped the ball into the top corner at incredible pace.
David Beckham – City 0-1 United, November 2000
Beckham had already scored six Premier League goals in the 2000-21 season when United made the short trip to take on City, but this was undoubtedly his best so far. The England international stood over a central free-kick 30 yards out and found the top corner of the City net with a trademark curler. Beckham scored countless set pieces during his career, but this was up there with any of them.
Hatem Trabelsi – United 3-1 City, December 2006
City fans can be forgiven if they have forgotten about Trabelsi’s time at the club, but this superb strike deserved to live long in the memory. Stephen Ireland did well to evade a couple of United challenges and nudge the ball on to Trabelsi, just inside the area but with a crowded penalty box ahead of him. Trabelsi cut inside Rio Ferdinand and thundered a stunning effort that flew in off the crossbar, though it proved nothing more than a consolation as United ran out comfortable winners.
Craig Bellamy – United 4-3 City, September 2009
United took the points in this seven-goal thriller but City scored the best of them, Wales forward Bellamy producing a moment of magic to stamp his name into derby folklore. Bellamy collected a pass from Carlos Tevez wide on the left, about 30 yards from goal, and only had one thing on his mind. An initial feint created the space for Bellamy to drive towards the box and he unleashed an unstoppable 20-yard drive into the top corner of the Red Devils’ goal.
That made it 3-3, City equalising for the third time in the game, but it was not enough as Michael Owen came up with a winner deep into injury time.
Wayne Rooney – United 2-1 City, February 2011
Ask most football fans to name a memorable Manchester derby goal and the chances are the first one that will leap to mind is this unbelievable Rooney strike. When Nani sent a cross into the box from the right wing it seemed as if there was nothing on. Rooney acted on instinct, though, launching himself into an acrobatic bicycle kick that sent the ball flying into the City net, leaving goalkeeper Joe Hart motionless.
Critics might claim the contact perhaps came off Rooney’s shin, but the vision and skill required to pull off a goal – which won this derby – means the England star deserves full credit.
Edin Dzeko – United 1-6 City, October 2011
One of the most incredible Manchester derbies in history was capped by Dzeko’s goal, which was created by a superb piece of skill from City talisman Silva. The goal actually came from a long City clearance and a loose United header that fell at the feet of Silva, who was 15 yards inside his own half. The Spain star teed himself up with his first touch then sent a sensational volleyed pass with his magical left foot through for Dzeko to run beyond the United defence. Dzeko’s powerful finish did the rest, completing a thumping win, but the goal was all about Silva.