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Man City v Tottenham – Preview, Predictions and Best Bets

Man City host Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday evening.

Man City v Tottenham

Man City host Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday evening. Pep Guardiola’s side sits eight points off log leaders Arsenal and can’t afford to drop any more points. They face Spurs twice in three rounds of league action, a side who has won their last two matches vs City. Tottenham comes into this in poor form, with question marks growing over Antonio Conte’s future.

Man City Form

Man City are not at their best right now. Prior to the World Cup break, they lost 2-1 at home to Brentford as they leaked a last-gasp goal. Although they resumed in December by beating Liverpool 3-2 in the League Cup and winning 3-1 at Leeds, they could go draw 1-1 at home with a desperately out-of-sorts Everton side.

They then had a very poor first half at Chelsea but got a 1-0 win in the second half. A straightforward 4-0 win at home against the same opponents followed in the FA Cup. Since then, City have lost 2-0 at Southampton in the FA Cup and 2-1 at Man Utd in the league. Although they were robbed by a poor offside goal in that match, they also carried little threat themselves: just 0.65 xG and five shots despite having 71% ball possession.

Man City Team News

There are just two injuries for Guardiola to contend with. John Stones has a knock and remains a doubt whilst Ruben Dias is out injured. Manuel Akanji and Aymeric Laporte could play centrally with Nathan Ake at left-back, and Joao Cancelo left out. 

Further forward, Jack Grealish scored against Man Utd from the bench and could be handed a start. Ilkay Gundogan may also come into the XI for more midfield control. Rico Lewis is another option in an inverted fullback/central midfield hybrid position.

Man City Motivation

Motivation is very high. Nothing less than a win will do in this match to close the gap to Arsenal at the top.

Guardiola will also be very focused on ensuring Tottenham doesn’t beat his side for a third match in a row.

Tottenham Form

Spurs are in poor form results, and performance-wise. Their last 12 matches in the league have seen six losses and they’re now five points off the top four with one game in hand. Whilst five of their six losses in 11 have been to some of the top sides – Arsenal home and away, Man Utd (A), Newcastle (H), Liverpool (H) – they’ve also been beaten 2-0 at home by Aston Vila.

After trailing 2-0 at Brentford after the World Cup, they fought back to draw 2-2. The Villa loss followed before winning 4-0 at Crystal Palace as a 0-0 half-time scoreline became a comfortable victory. After a 1-0 win against Portsmouth in the FA Cup, they were soundly beaten 2-0 at home by Arsenal.

Tottenham Team News

In attack, Spurs have Lucas Moura absent but both Richarlison and Dejan Kulusevski are fit again. The latter will start whilst Richarlison is likely to be used from the bench unless the out-of-form Son is dropped.

Yves Bissouma is fit again and could start, whilst Rodrigo Bentancur is nearing a return to the matchday squad. Ben Davies and Ivan Perisic could be recalled down the left flank after that proved a problem area against Arsenal.

Tottenham Motivation

Spurs have beaten City twice in a row by being ruthless on counter attacks. Conte is not going to move away from that approach in this game.

The big question is whether the coach can motivate his players to play well in the first half. In most recent matches, they’ve been awful until halftime before coming out in the second period with more far intensity and purpose.

Key Stats

City have dropped 8 points in their last 5 PL matches (L2, D1)

Man City have won 11 of their last 13 home matches (PL)

City have conceded in their last 4 home PL matches

Spurs have lost 6 of their last 12 PL matches

There have been over 2.5 goals scored in 6 of Tottenham’s last 8 PL matches.

Spurs have won 2 matches in a row vs Man City


This is a must-win for City and they could leave gaps for Spurs to exploit. Any of the three results are possible despite Tottenham’s recent struggles. However, the smart money may be on the goals markets, a City win or both sides scoring.

Best Bet: Both teams to score at 1.76

Alternative Bet: Man City win and over 2.5 goals at 1.86

Goalscorer Tip: Kane and Haaland to both score anytime at 5.22

Alternative Bet: Over 3.5 goals at 2.25

James is a football analyst who writes about the tactics of the PSL and English Premier League. He holds the UEFA A coaching licence and has previously worked for several clubs in analysis roles.Twitter:

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