Cristiano Ronaldo not a ‘big loss’ for Manchester United in derby, claims Gary Neville

Cristiano Ronaldo misses out on the Manchester derby through injury (Manchester United via Getty Imag)
Cristiano Ronaldo misses out on the Manchester derby through injury (Manchester United via Getty Imag)

Gary Neville maintains Cristiano Ronaldo would not be a “big loss” for Manchester United if he misses the derby against Manchester City.

Speculation has suggested the Portuguese will miss the match at the Etihad Stadium through injury.

But Neville insists the 37-year-old’s profile and the style of play United will likely play against Pep Guardiola’s champions could mean his absence is not a significant blow to their chances.

Ronaldo is the team’s top scorer this season with 15 goals in 30 appearances across all competitions - but he has scored just one goal in his last 10 appearances for the Red Devils.

"Manchester United have been playing on the counter attack [at Manchester City in recent years],” Neville told Sky Sports.

“United over the last three or four years have been a counter-attacking team, punching out through Rashford and others on the break.

“Cristiano not being in the team, you'd never say it's a positive, but I don't see it as a big loss you might see it in other games.

“Because I think on the counter attack, Manchester United need to be dangerous today, and they're better off with Rashford up front than Cristiano.”