• Saturday, May 25, 2024
businessday logo


Manchester City vs Tottenham: Spurs face tricky Etihad test

Tottenham face a tricky task when they travel to Etihad Stadium on Sunday to play Premier League champions Manchester City.

Both teams will be aiming to return to winning ways after losing their last Premier League match.

Aston Villa stunned Spurs last time out by snatching a win in north London despite a positive performance from Ange Postecoglou’s injury-hit side.

While Spurs are hoping to end a three-match losing streak, the Citizens are seeking to avoid going three top-flight games without a win for the first time since 2017.

After three weeks at the Premier League summit, reigning champions, Manchester City have surrendered the top spot to Arsenal after playing out successive score draws in their last two league matches with Chelsea and Liverpool.

Read alsoHaaland heroics shoot Man City top of European elite ranking

Pep Guardiola’s City side have looked vulnerable in recent weeks, dropping points to Chelsea and Liverpool while requiring a comeback from two goals down to beat RB Leipzig in the Champions League.

Spurs have been fairly impressive so far this season. The North London outfit slumped to a narrow 2-1 defeat at the hands of Villa last week and will need to work hard to bounce back in this match.

City came from two goals down at halftime to beat Tottenham 4-2 on home soil last season and can’t -afford to suffer defeat to Spurs at Etihad Stadium on Sunday if they wish to remain in touching distance with league leaders Arsenal, who currently sit one point clear of the Citizens in second and are preparing for two favourable fixtures against Wolves and Luton Town.

Spurs are missing Rodrigo Bentancur and Pape Sarr owing to injury. As defender Cristian Romero serves the final game of his suspension, Yves Bissouma returns to midfield.

Despite their run of defeats, Spurs have produced some good performances, but this will be one step too far for Postecoglou at this stage of his term – unless City have a truly bad day.

After recovering from injury, John Stones might return to City’s starting lineup, with Mateo Kovacic also available and Matheus Nunes set to miss out.

Nathan Ake, Jeremy Doku, and Julian Alvarez are also in contention for a starting spot. Kevin De Bruyne is still out.

City have dropped points in their last two Premier League games, drawing with Chelsea and Liverpool, and will avoid dropping points in three consecutive games for the first time since Guardiola took over at the start of the 2016/17 season.

The pressure will be on City to secure the win on Sunday before heading on the road for tricky encounters with Villa and Luton.

Since Pep arrived at Man City in 2016, the Citizens have lost more games to Spurs (six) than they have against any other opponent, conceding 19 goals in the process.

However, City have a good home record against Spurs ahead of Sunday’s clash as they have won nine, drawn two and lost just two of their last 13 league meetings with the Lilywhites at the Etihad.