United enter Saturday’s meeting with Pep Guardiola’s side without a win so far this term, having slipped to a fifth defeat in six outings when they travelled to Liverpool last weekend.
Although Wilder has told his players that points rather than performances will ultimately decide where they finish in the table - he reminded the two are inextricably linked, suggesting a breakthrough is not far away.
“The boys are mentally in good nick,” Wilder said. “They’re positive, they're upbeat and so they should be after playing like they did last time out. You don’t perform the way they did, against a team like Liverpool, if you haven’t got something about you. So if anyone was in any doubt about these boys, there they go.
“Yes, we want points. But if you keep playing well then those will come. Yes, results decide everything. But that’s why managers and coaches look at performances too, rather than just the table.”
United remained 19th in the table after losing on Merseyside. City, who were deposed as champions by Liverpool earlier this year, are 13th after also making an indifferent start; albeit by their own high-standards.
“I’d said before (Liverpool) I thought the lads were a little anxious,” Wilder said. “And that’s understandable. But that doesn’t mean they don’t believe in themselves, it’s two totally different things. They do (believe).”