Manchester United v Manchester City - key battles

Manchester United came out on top the last time these two met. Photo: PA

Manchester United and Manchester City clash at Old Trafford on Monday in a derby fixture that has become one of the biggest games in English football.

The stakes may not be as high as in some recent meetings, with City having all but conceded the Barclays Premier League title to United, but the clash is nevertheless eagerly anticipated.

Here,we take a look at the potential key battles.

RIO FERDINAND v CARLOS TEVEZ

Ferdinand may have courted some controversy in recent weeks and his future might be the subject of speculation, but his performances have been exceptional and up to the standards he has set in his fine career. He may need to be on full alert to keep his former team-mate Tevez quiet. The Argentinian, who will need no extra motivation, has scored seven goals in his last six games.

MICHAEL CARRICK v YAYA TOURE

Carrick continues to divide opinion among pundits but he is integral to United. His range of passing makes him highly effective and he moves the team around with quiet efficiency. Toure, by contrast, rarely goes unnoticed. He is City's midfield driving force and his influence has just been recognised with a new contract.

ROBIN VAN PERSIE v VINCENT KOMPANY

United's prolific Dutch striker has endured a lean spell in recent weeks, going without a goal in his last nine United appearances - although his deflected strike saw off Sunderland last week and he was on target three times for Holland last month. He will come up against fit-again City captain Kompany, who returned to action last week looking to reassert himself after two months out.