After extending their lead at the top of the table to 16 points over the weekend, Pep Guardiola’s side will wrap up the title with five games to spare – assuming they don’t drop anymore points between now and 7 April.
The league leaders would head into that game at the Etihad on 87 points while United, assuming they win all their upcoming fixtures, would stand on 71 points before kick-off.
Victory that day, though, would take City up to 90 points – a 19-point lead which United would be mathematically unable to overhaul.
A draw would also guarantee City the title. With the spoils shared, Guardiola’s side would move up to 88 points and United up to 72. With five games left to play beyond that, Jose Mourinho’s men would be incapable of catching their rivals.
Only a victory for United would delay City’s inevitable coronation.
And if the Old Trafford club drop anymore points in the run-up to 7 April, thus allowing their rivals to secure the title before that weekend, they may have to give City a Guard of Honour at the Etihad.
United's defeat by Newcastle on Sunday saw the club lose further ground on their rivals City and left Mourinho to lament his defenders' aerial mistakes at St James' Park.
“I don’t like to complain about referees in this kind of situation,” he said. “I don’t know if it’s a free-kick. What I know is we missed a challenge in the air and missed the second ball. I coach my payers, I don’t coach the referees. I have to be more disappointed with my players for losing that challenge.
“We train, we work, we organise. The players have their individual jobs in defence or not. The player know their responsibilities.
"Clearly I know we lost the duel in the air and it’s difficult to accept that.”
City, meanwhile, recorded a thumping 5-1 victory over Leicester on Saturday, with Sergio Aguero notably clinching four goals. Guardiola afterwards described the win as one of his best as City manager.
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