Uwe Rosler wants City to see off United on Monday evening for a set of supporters he believes deserves nothing but the very best.
The former City striker, now manager at Brentford, will never forget the way the Blues’ supporters treated him during his time at Maine Road and he feels the Premier League title would repay the fans’ loyalty and backing during the leaner years the Club endured.
“First of all I think it is an honour and a privilege to be remembered by the best fans in the world,” said Rosler. "It warms my heart and the hearts of my family.
My sons never saw me play, but they hear the fans sing my name and I'm very honoured that the City supporters still think of me. It's very flattering
Rosler knows a thing or two about Manchester derbies having scored a couple of cracking goals against United for City, but he never ended with a victory over the Reds – something he regrets he never experienced with the Blues.
“It’s true I scored a few goals against United, but I was never on the winning side!” he said. “I would have happily given some of those goals away if it meant beating our biggest rivals at least once.
“The game that stands out is obviously our FA Cup game at Old Trafford. We had a higher ticket allocation so there must have been about 10,000 City supporters behind the goal we were attacking. I scored in front of them after Georgi Kinkladze played me through. It was quite a good goal and it was a very special moment for me – but we still lost.”
Turning his thoughts to Monday’s derby after watching his Brentford side’s League 1 play-off hopes finally ended by a 2-1 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday, Rosler is hoping nerves don’t get the better of City in a game that anything other than a home win will hand the title initiative back to United.
“I'll be commentating on the game for Norwegian television,” he said. ”I follow City as much as I can, but obviously I’ve been very much occupied with my own club, Brentford, this season. I've managed to get to a few games, though.
“On Monday it's very important that everyone remains positive, no matter what. I was there in the first Champions League game against Napoli and the crowd were a little bit uncertain at times and a little bit nervous.
“Everybody has to play their part against United, from the players to the supporters. Our fans have to be very, very positive and believe that we have what it takes to win the Premier League. I've said it from day one that I think this year is our year.”