David Moyes wants Manchester United to prove they are still a force to be reckoned with by beating Manchester City on Tuesday night.
City are big favourites for the derby at Old Trafford due to their higher league standing and the fact that United have struggled against the top teams in the league this year.
A 1-0 victory against Arsenal aside, Moyes' men have not beaten any of the sides in the top nine in what has been a truly disappointing maiden season for the Scot.
Moyes wants that to change on Tuesday though.
"We we want to try and perform better in the bigger games than what we have done," the United manager said.
"It will be important for us to show the level of what we have got.
"I think we have got the level and we are not as far away as many people would have us and I have no doubt it will improve. We want to show we are still in there fighting.
"We will do everything we can to win. We go out to win every game, not just the derby game.
"Obviously it means a lot more to the supporters and the city if you win a derby game."
United are 12 points behind City, and Manuel Pellegrini's men have played two less matches.
The Red Devils go into the match on the back of encouraging wins against Olympiacos and West Ham though.
United had to field Michael Carrick at centre-half at Upton Park because of injuries to Chris Smalling, Jonny Evans and Rio Ferdinand. Nemanja Vidic was also absent through suspension.
The United captain remains banned for the visit of City, but Moyes would not give away anything about the fitness of the three injured players.
"For this Barclays Premier League game we'll do everything we possibly can to get the [injured] players back," was all that Moyes would say when questioned on the matter at his pre-match press conference.
Manchester United: Potential summer transfer targets
Manchester United: Potential summer transfer targets
1/19 Arturo Vidal
The Juventus midfielder is among United's top targets this summer, particularly after impressing for Chile at the World Cup. Having helped his current team secure the Serie A title, Juventus aren't keen on letting him go.
2/19 Marco Reus
Rumoured to be near the top of United's target list, a possible swap deal involving cash and Shinji Kagawa has been mentioned. The Borussia Dortmund player would not be a cheap acquisition, especially given his recent declaration that he wants to stay at Dortmund next season
3/19 Arda Turan
Former manager David Moyes had been seen watching Turan, though his dismissal put a doubt over whether United were still interested. The winger's agent claims an offer has been made, so is the Atletico Madrid winger on his way to Old Trafford?
4/19 Arjen Robben
The Bayern Munich winger has said Van Gaal has offered him a place at Old Trafford if he wants it. Currently he's happy to stay where he is, but things can quickly change.
5/19 Claudio Marchisio
With Paul Pogba highly unlikely to be prised away from Juventus, United's attention could turn to team-mate Claudio Marchisio. The Italian international would provide some class and experience.
6/19 Mats Hummels
With defensive reinforcements high on United's list of priorities, Borussia Dortmund's Mats Hummels has unsurprisingly been linked with a move to Old Trafford. The German has been earmarked as the ideal replacement for the now-departed Rio Ferdinand and after his impressive showing at the World Cup, he's even more desirable.
7/19 Raphael Varane
Raphael Varane has already snubbed United once in his career, opting instead to join Real Madrid. It would surely take a big offer to prise the classy defender away now.
8/19 Seamus Coleman
Reportedly already the subject of a £15m bid, Seamus Coleman could be the man being lined up as the answer to United's problems at right-back.
9/19 William Carvalho
The Sporting Lisbon midfielder has reportedly been watched 15 times by Manchester United, although the £29m asking price could prove a stumbling block. The Portugal international has also been linked with Arsenal.
10/19 Xherdan Shaqiri
Bayern Munich winger Xherdan Shaqiri has struggled to force his way into the first team at the Allianz Arena and could be a target for United as well as rivals Liverpool. His impressive displays for Switzerland this summer could make it harder to prise him away.
11/19 Alex Song
Barcelona are understood to be ready to let the former Arsenal player leave this summer. Could provide some strength to United's midfield. Could also bring embarrassment judging by his behaviour at the World Cup.
12/19 Fabio Coentrao
Supposedly came within hours of signing in January, the Portuguese left back could be brought in to provide back-up to Luke Shaw.
13/19 Julian Draxler
A long time Arsenal target, United are reportedly interested in pinching the young German with a bumper offer. Seems unlikely though. Arsenal also strongly interested.
14/19 Sami Khedira
The Germany international is reportedly being pursued by a host of sides, and United might be wise to get in the mix as they look to add some quality to a fairly feeble looking midfield. Real Madrid appear open to letting him go with the 27-year-old having just one year left on his contract. Arsenal and Chelsea are among the others keen on signing the World Cup winner.
15/19 Edinson Cavani
The Uruguayan hitman would prove pricey and tricky to snatch away from PSG and it seems unlikely United have enough to offer him.
16/19 Luciano Vietto
The Racing Club youngster has been impressing in Argentina for some time although a move directly to United would be something of a surprise.
17/19 Santiago Arias
Should a move for Seamus Coleman fail, PSV defender Arias is reportedly being lined up by United. Played for Colombia throughout the group stage of the World Cup.
18/19 Miralem Pjanic
Rumoured to part of a joint bid including teammate Benatia, the Bosnian midfielder is reportedly another on United's large hit list.
19/19 Kevin Strootman
Van Gaal knows Strootman well from working with him in the Netherlands set-up and has indicated he is interested. Roma are reluctant to sell whilst his recovery from a knee injury may prove a stumbling block.
Should none of the trio be fit, Moyes is certain he has a good enough back up in Carrick.
Carrick performed well keeping Andy Carroll quiet on Saturday, but the pace of Alvaro Negredo, who is expected to lead the line for City in the absence of the injured Sergio Aguero, will present the England midfielder with a different and perhaps more dangerous threat.
Moyes said: "Michael did great at centre-half. He's played there before so it wasn't a problem.
"We even considered putting (Marouane) Fellaini back there as well, so I think we've got people who can do that if we have to.
"We gave Patrice Evra a rest but if we have to, I think we can put him there as well and he would cope manfully.
"It was great that the squad mucked in and that's the way it should be, when you are short in areas and it's all hands to the pumps.
"We were short on Saturday and Michael certainly played really well."
Rooney made Saturday's game in east London one to remember as he scored a stunning goal from just inside the West Ham half.
The England striker then added a second to move above Jack Rowley into third in the club's all-time top scorers list.
Moyes thinks Rooney may have a big bearing on the outcome of the derby, which comes six months after City hammered United 4-1 at the Etihad Stadium.
"Wayne's form throughout the season has been very good and his goal capped off what everybody is aware he's capable of," the United boss said.
"He's spoken about a lot because of his ability as a footballer. He showed it on Saturday in a way maybe everybody is aware he's capable of, but which many others maybe aren't capable of.
"But more importantly for me is how well he's played for the team - that's a big thing.
"From the first game he's been a great team player. I don't know if he'll be the key man because this game has got many, many top-class players in it, so I wouldn't necessarily say he's the main man, but he's certainly one of them."