It’s Jose Mourinho versus Pep Guardiola once again as Tottenham Hotspur host Manchester City on Saturday, with both sides hoping to make a real statement in this year’s title race.
Here’s all you need to know about Saturday’s meeting at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium:
It may only be eight games into the new season but if their recent form is anything to go by then Spurs could well be title challengers this term, particularly if the other big sides continue their erratic form.
Mourinho’s men have already showcased their ability to win both in style and win ‘ugly’, with their last three league encounters seeing them just about claim victory despite not being at their best.
The last meeting, in particular, saw a laboured Spurs display away to West Brom, before the in-form Harry Kane nodded home late on as his scintillating start to the season continues.
That reliance on both Kane and Heung-Min Son is still perhaps an issue for Mourinho, although Gareth Bale continues to look sharper with each passing game and will add another devastating string to his side’s bow when he is back to his top level.
With City to come next, Spurs will perhaps face their toughest test of the season so far, particularly with Guardiola’s side slowly-but-surely getting back to their best.
One major source of frustration for Mourinho, however, will be the absence of summer signing Matt Doherty, after the former Wolves man tested positive for Covid-19 while on international duty with Ireland.
Manchester City: DWDWD
A lot of pundits and fans alike have seemingly written off City’s title chances this season, yet after a somewhat slow start to the campaign, the 2018/19 title winners are beginning to click into gear.
Their last fixture prior to the international break saw them come from behind to draw with champions Liverpool in what was a truly breathtaking first 45 minutes of football from both sides, before fatigue and tiredness set in, in what was a drab second half.
Man City had fallen behind after Mo Salah had converted from the penalty spot, yet were soon back in the game as Gabriel Jesus brilliantly turned his man before poking home past compatriot Alisson.
Kevin De Bruyne was then gifted a chance to put his side ahead from the penalty spot, yet inexplicably missed the target.
Despite Liverpool’s early onslaught, what that match did show was City’s newfound defensive resilience, with Ruben Dias and Aymeric Laporte looking like the pairing supporters have been craving in recent years.
That defence will have to be on top form to repel the in-form duo of Kane and Son, while in attack the potential absence of Raheem Sterling – who was kept out England duty over the last week – will give Guardiola an unwanted headache.
Tottenham 2-0 Manchester City, February 2, 2020
The two sides last meeting came back in February, with an injury-plagued Tottenham running out 2-0 winners after an action-packed 90 minutes of football.
City were rampant in attack yet couldn’t find the net, with chance after chance being spurned as Spurs sought to hang on in true Mourinho fashion.
The visitors had a glorious opportunity to take the lead after Serge Aurier had fouled Sergio Aguero in the box, yet Ilkay Gundogan failed to convert from the spot. That proved costly as Spurs took the lead, with January signing Steven Bergwijn volleying home on his debut, the opening coming just three minutes after City had been reduced to 10 men following Oleksandr Zinchenko’s red card.
Spurs’ lead was extended with less than 20 minutes to go as Son’s deflected effort flew past ‘keeper Ederson to keep the away side’s top-four hopes alive.
Unfortunately for Mourinho and co, they would miss out on a coveted Champions League spot, while City finished second, a long way behind deserved champions Liverpool.
Tottenham: Lloris; Aurier, Alderweireld, Dier, Reguilon; Hojberg, Sissoko, Ndombele; Moura, Kane, Son.
Manchester City: Ederson; Walker, Dias, Laporte, Cancelo; Rodri, Gundogan, De Bruyne; Mahrez, Jesus, Torres.
Who is the referee?
How can I watch?
UK and Irish Readers can watch on Sky Sports Main Event.
If you are unable to watch the game because you are in a different country, a VPN allows you to access the big matches while abroad.
What time is kick off?
Saturday, November 21st, 17:30 GMT
Tottenham – 3/1
Man City – 4/5
Draw – 3/1
The post Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester City – Match Preview first appeared on The Football Faithful.