DAVID HOLDSWORTH: United and Reds fans up for game, but passion from players is missing
If you are a football fan, you love a match against your rivals. It is the boiling point of the tribalism which comes in the game and for me, as a player and a manager, they are some of the most testing matches I've ever endured.
On Sunday the biggest one in the Premier League calendar is taking place, when Liverpool head to Old Trafford to take on Manchester United.
It is one of those blood and thunder clashes which sees the two most successful clubs in the English game lock horns. The hype is there and it is understandable when you look at the history, but that is all it is becoming now – hype.
The ferocity of the days when home grown talent would go out onto the pitch at Old Trafford to stand up for their club has sadly gone.
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Who can forget times when Steven Gerrard and Gary Neville used to go at it full throttle?
But that era is ebbing away and the tide has almost gone out. For Liverpool, Gerrard is still there and Jamie Carragher is not as prominent as he once was.
Manchester United, though, well, they have some youngsters coming through, but none epitomise the club like Neville did.
And Liverpool's slide down the table has also not helped. Their chopping and changing of managers has left them in a poor state.
The two are not locked in a head-to-head title fight here and that takes the edge off as well.
I'm not saying the match will be a damp squib. In fact, we're going to see two of the best strikers in the Premier League in Robin van Persie and Luis Suarez, but there will not be that intensity of old. Which is a shame, because as I said, I've been in rival matches which have been feisty, full-blooded and, at times, outright war.
During my playing days I relished such matches. I've enjoyed some tasty encounters.
Birmingham versus Wolves was one of those games. It slips under the radar a bit when you think of derby clashes, but trust me, if you are in it, you know about it.
The fans are fired up and so are the players.
I remember going out there when Kevin Muscat was playing for Wolves. He was going up against his Australian team-mate Stan Lazaridis, but did he show any quarter towards his fellow Aussie? Not a bit. Stan came in with stud marks all over him, we were counting up the wounds after that game, it was a complete battle.
Some lads are not up for that battle. I've sat in dressing rooms before games like that, you can hear the crowd, you can feel the intensity in the air and you look round and can see some boys who want to get back on the bus and run home. I'm not like that, I relish it. I grew up on a council estate in London, so going out on a football pitch does not worry me.
Getting into some of the grounds on days like that are never easy, either. It seems like a cliché, but when I was with Watford, heading to Millwall was pretty intense. I've never got on well there, either. I think I've ended up getting sent off in a few of those games.
But such games are brilliant and I think for Lincoln the clashes against Grimsby this season have been fantastic matches.
I think they really summed up what one of those fixtures should be about.
It's about players playing, not just for points, but for pride in their club and bragging rights.
I just wonder how many of the players who go toe-to-toe at Old Trafford on Sunday will show that same pride and passion which is going to be evident on the terraces?