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Manchester City 0-0 Manchester United: Marouane Fellaini shown red card for headbutt on Sergio Aguer


Marouane Fellaini was sent off for his pointless headbutting on Sergio Aguero as Manchester City and Manchester United fought out weakening goalless draw at Etihad Stadium to leave their hopes of a place in the Premier League's top four still in the balance.

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho will be delighted after they extended their unbeaten league run to 24 games, a feat achieved without Fellaini in the closing stages after he was sent off for a senseless headbutt on Aguero.

Argentine Aguero came closest to score for his side when he hit the post early on and manager Pep Guardiola was left with an injury concern when keeper Claudio Bravo was taken off on a stretcher after injuring his calf catching a cross in the second half.

Manchester United had 30.8% possession - it was their lowest figure in a Premier League game since Opta began recording possession in 2003-04.

But Jose Mourinho's men showed all the qualities that have ensured they have remained unbeaten in the Premier League since October to fight their way to a point here.

United spent much of the game being outclassed by City, and almost the entire second half assembled in their own area, but showed the reserves of resilience, organisation and defiance that paid for their current lack of stardust.

Michael Carrick provided good solid platform and for the most part City were frustrated, with too many efforts off target or lacking the power to trouble United keeper David de Gea.

United had real threat in the pace of Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial but their midfield lacked the craft to provide the right service.

This result keeps Man-United right in the run for the top four as they stand in fifth place, one point behind City and two points behind third-placed Liverpool with a game in hand.

The biggest negative on Thursday night was the crass foolishness of Fellaini, recklessly and pointlessly involved in the incident that saw him thrust his head into the face of Aguero.

Fellaini was booked 19 seconds earlier for another foul on the City forward and after his red card the Belgian had to be encouraged to leave the field by his team-mates.

substitute Gabriel Jesus had a later header correctly ruled out for offside as City remain in fourth place, with United a point behind in fifth as both sides have five games remaining.

Gabriel Jesus celebrates his goal before it was ruled offside.

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My opinion: The biggest loser of Thursday night is Marouane Fellaini