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Manchester City have thrown down a derby day challenge to rivals United and with four simple words Micah Richards ended a week of diplomacy: "They're afraid of us."

With Alex Ferguson, a variety of players and a queue of Manchester United legends lining up all week to express respect for the progress Roberto Mancini (right) and his team have made, the build-up to a huge derby has been sugar-coated and tame.

But Richards swept that aside and revealed how Mancini has targeted the trip to Old Trafford for a win.

"If you speak to Mancini he wants to go there and win. United now know that we are a genuine threat to them.

"They call us the noisy neighbours. I think they're a bit frightened," claimed a bullish Richards.

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