The two old rivals meet in Texas on Friday but Man United and Man City will go toe to toe for the title next season predicts Sky pundit.
The historic Manchester derby shoot-out in Texas will be an early test of strength between the two clubs who will fight it out for the Premier League title.
That was the view of former Manchester United star and respected Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville, who is tipping his old club and Manchester City to scrap it out for top spot.
The two meet in an International Champions Cup match at Houston’s NRG Stadium in the early hours of Friday morning.
And Neville thinks the friendly game – the first Manchester derby played outside England – will be a dress rehearsal for a title battle between Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola.
“I said last season that the title would come to Manchester – and I was wrong – but I think this year it will,” said Neville.
“I think Chelsea will dip a little bit. Not in a negative way, but just having the Champions League will bring different challenges.
“I think Tottenham will be strong, but I feel that either United or City will win it, but I’m not sure who!”
The key will be the effectiveness of both club’s summer spending, Neville believes.
So far City have brought in midfielder Bernardo Silva, goalkeeper Ederson, right back Kyle Walker, and are believed to be close to clinching a deal for left back Benjamin Mendy as well as seeking to sign Alexis Sanchez from Arsenal.
United have also invested heavily in striker Romelu Lukaku and defender Victor Lindelof, and the way those players boost the respective squads will be vital.
“I say it every year, whoever recruits best, wins the league,” said Neville.
“Chelsea getting N’Golo Kante was a masterstroke and Eden Hazard and Diego Costa came back to form. All the clubs are going for the same players, they’re all expensive and controlled by agents.
“So, whoever has the best relationship, the best contacts and is willing to put the money in will probably do it.
“United need to strengthen, but they all do – quite a bit.
“Even the champions need to if they’re to repeat what they did last season.
“You’re not just talking about winning the Premier League title, you’re talking about competing in Europe.
“English clubs have been well short in the last few seasons. All big clubs want to be winning Champions Leagues.
“That won’t happen unless they significantly improve. United need to sign four or five players.”
The Manchester derby is the first of City’s three games in their US tour – they will face Real Madrid in Los Angeles on July 26 and Tottenham in Nashville on July 29 before heading to Iceland for their final pre-season fixture against West Ham on August 4.