Manchester City v Spurs
EPL Match Preview
The second-part of Sunday’s thrilling double-header in the Premier League sees second-placed Spurs travel to the Etihad Stadium to face fourth-place Manchester City.
THE CITIZENS ANXIOUS TO ERASE LEICESTER MAULING
For coach Manuel Pellegrini and his Manchester City players, this weekend’s crunch game against Spurs could not have come around quick enough after last week’s humbling at the hands of Leicester City. The Citizens will however, be aware of their poor record against teams in the top six, having failed to beat any of them so far this season. That statistic in reality will have to change on Sunday afternoon against second-placed Spurs or Pellegrini risks losing touch at the top in his final few months in charge. He does have a secret weapon up his sleeve in the form of Argentine striker Sergio Aguero, who loves playing against the men from North London; in eight top-flight appearances against them, he has rifled in 10 goals and the best online sports betting sites are confident that run will continue on Sunday, currently pricing him at *4.33 to be first or last scorer or a very short *1.90 to be on target during 90 minutes.
SPURS SHOWING REAL TITLE POTENTIAL
Could this be the season that Tottenham Hotspur finally win their first league championship since 1961? They will never be in a better position, currently second in the table above their bitter rivals Arsenal and by the end of Sunday, possibly within two points of the summit. With striker Harry Kane knocking in the goals at one end and French international goalkeeper Hugo Lloris keeping them out at the other, coach Mauricio Pochettino looks to have found the perfect blend this season and with at least five English players regularly making the first XI, it’s no wonder England Head Coach Roy Hodgson enjoys visiting White Hart Lane more than any other Premier League ground. Only Manchester United, Newcastle United and Leicester City have taken maximum points from the capital club this season, there is no reason why Spurs cannot make it another blue day for Manchester City on Sunday.
Pellegrini has been talking in the press this week that he only has around 14 fully fit first-team players to choose from at the moment. That list may be even shorter on Sunday, with Spanish play-maker David Silva struggling to be fit for the game. With Samir Nasri, Kevin De Bruyne, Eliaquim Mangala, Wilfried Bony, Vincent Kompany, Fabian Delph and Jesus Navas all unavailable, Pellegrini may have to start with a similar line-up to the one that was outplayed by Leicester City. Aleksandar Kolarov may move into midfield with Kelechi Iheanacho supporting Aguero in attack.
Clinton N’Jie and Jan Vertonghen are missing for Spurs, with Ben Davies and Kieran Trippier (scorer of the only goal last weekend) keeping their places in the side after impressive performances last time out against Watford. The other selection dilemma facing Pochettino is whether to play Erik Lamela or Hueng-Min Son as part of the three-man support role behind Kane.
Manchester City (from) Hart, Zabaleta, Kolarov, Otamendi, Clichy, Demichelis, Silva, Caballero, Sagna, Iheanacho, Fernando, Fernandinho, Toure, Aguero, Sterling, Celina, Garcia
Tottenham Hotspur (from) Lloris, Alderweireld, Trippier, Wimmer, Vorn, Walker, Mason, Davies, Chadli, Son Heung-Min, Lamela, Eriksen, Carroll, Alli, Dier, Dembele, Rose, Kane
HEAD TO HEAD
Manchester City have won eight and lost two of their last 10 league meeting with Spurs, winning the last five at the Etihad Stadium. The last nine Premier League encounters between the two have produced 41 goals and the best football betting guides are confident they’ll be more on Sunday, offering long odds of *13.00 for it to end goalless. Spurs won the first meeting handsomely back in September, inflicting a 4-1 defeat on Pellegrini’s team.
Manchester City 2.10 Draw 3.75 Spurs 3.60
*odds courtesy of Bet365
By: Steve Mitchell