Speaking ahead of Sunday’s derby, Manuel Pellegrini has claimed that United aren’t any stronger this season compared to last.

Similar. I think that both teams are similar. We are not stronger. I think Manchester United bought very important players this year. I think also they are at the moment where you start with a new manager and new players which is not easy. Maybe the same thing happened with me last year so I think they are in similar moments.

In most games United have played so far this season, we’ve had half of the starting XI made up of players who had never played for United before this season. It stands to reason that our results wouldn’t be up to scratch.

But anyone who thinks the way we’re playing this season is “similar” to how we played last season, clearly has not been watching our matches.