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Derbies precede PSG-Monaco showdown

Published: Friday 20 September 2013, 9.26CET
Derbies in Istanbul, Manchester, Moscow and Rome will stir passions before the weekend finishes with the battle of Ligue 1's big spenders: AS Monaco FC at Paris Saint-Germain FC.

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Published: Friday 20 September 2013, 9.26CET

Derbies precede PSG-Monaco showdown

Derbies in Istanbul, Manchester, Moscow and Rome will stir passions before the weekend finishes with the battle of Ligue 1's big spenders: AS Monaco FC at Paris Saint-Germain FC.

Russia: FC Spartak Moskva v PFC CSKA Moskva (Sunday 11.30)
Third-placed Spartak will draw level on points with their city rivals if they defeat the Premier League leaders for the first time since April 2011. CSKA suffered their first loss in ten games this season when they succumbed 3-0 at FC Bayern München in the UEFA Champions League on Tuesday, a setback which, according to midfielder Pontus Wernbloom, makes them even more determined going into the derby. "We are very disappointed but every loss gives you extra experience. Now we will be even more fired up."

Italy: AS Roma v SS Lazio (Sunday 15.00)
Having lost 1-0 to Lazio in the 2013 Coppa Italia final, Roma are eager for revenge. "The derby in May is history," said Giallorossi captain Francesco Totti, on target in Serie A for the 228th time as Rudi Garcia's side won 3-1 at Parma FC on Monday, their third victory in as many league outings this term. "This is the best way to approach the derby. We know it will be a difficult match, but we also know how to face them." The 36-year-old – level with Marco Delvecchio and Dino da Costa on nine Derby della Capitale goals – could become the first player to score ten times in the fixture.

Netherlands: PSV Eindhoven v AFC Ajax (Sunday 16.30)
The meeting of these great Eredivisie rivals brings together two coaches, Phillip Cocu and Frank de Boer, who played together for FC Barcelona and the Netherlands and were assistants to Bert van Marwijk when the Oranje finished runners-up at the 2010 FIFA World Cup. PSV lead Ajax by a point after six matches – unexpectedly, however, it is PEC Zwolle who top the table, not the former, with PSV having drawn their last three league games. Cocu, though, sees no reason for concern. "We have to keep going on the path we have chosen," he said.

England: Manchester City FC v Manchester United FC (Sunday 17.00)
United lifted their performance to "another level" during the 4-2 defeat of Bayer 04 Leverkusen, according to Michael Carrick. Though David Moyes's men, like City, have triumphed in only two of their first four Premier League assignments, the England midfielder does not think "we've played badly so far this season".

Turning in a display at the City of Manchester Stadium – where Manuel Pellegrini and Moyes will experience this derby for the first time – similar to that which United delivered in midweek is uppermost in the 32-year-old's thoughts. "We won [2-0 against Crystal Palace FC] at the weekend and on Tuesday we took it to another level and improved again," he said. "Hopefully we can do it again. The performance will breed confidence and we'll have to do it all again on Sunday."

Turkey: Beşiktas JK v Galatasaray AŞ (Sunday 18.00)
Beaten 6-1 at home by Real Madrid CF in midweek, Galatasaray face a Beşiktaş side who have started the Süper Lig season with four straight wins. Having opened with a victory, Cimbom have drawn their last three league games and will fall nine points behind their rivals in the nascent standings if they lose at the 76,000-capacity Atatürk Olympic Stadium in the first Istanbul derby of 2013/14.

Off the pitch, Slaven Bilić, appointed by Beşiktaş in the summer, will try to get one over opposite number Faith Terim, whose Turkey team knocked Bilić's Croatia out of UEFA EURO 2008 on penalties in a memorable Vienna quarter-final. "It's important to maintain our lead as much as winning the derby," said Bilić. "It's a very valuable game for the remainder of the campaign."

France: Paris Saint-Germain FC v AS Monaco FC (Sunday 21.00)
Perhaps the most anticipated fixture in France this term, Sunday night's encounter pits together the nation's biggest spenders, with Monaco seeking to put a dent in PSG's Ligue 1 title defence at the Parc des Princes. Both clubs are unbeaten in their first five league matches, though third-placed PSG trail pacesetters Monaco by two points.

PSG's Edinson Cavani has already met Monaco forward Falcao this year, scoring as his Uruguay team beat Colombia 2-0 in a World Cup qualifier on 11 September. However, that clash left him in no doubt about the UEFA Europa League record scorer's credentials. "Falcao is a great player," said Cavani. "We know he can decide a game on his own."

All times CET

Last updated: 04/12/13 3.26CET

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