30 November 2023
Manchester City vs Tottenham: A Sunday clash to savour
One team has just relinquished their lead at the top of the table and the other has just dropped out of the top four. Manchester City versus Tottenham is always a fixture that catches the eye and it’s come at a time where both teams really need a win to get their season back on track.
In preparation for their meeting on Sunday (live on Showmax Pro Mobile, courtesy of SuperSport), here’s what you need to know.
Honeymoon is over for Postecoglou
Many were skeptical at the idea of appointing Ange Postecoglou, but the Australian quickly charmed many doubters by the style of football he brought in, the honest outlook of his press conferences and (most importantly) the results.
After his first 10 matches, Tottenham were sitting at the top of the table. Then came three consecutive losses that’s seen them drop out of the top four completely. Things come at you pretty quick in the Premier League.
A pessimist would see it as the worst time to play Manchester City away. Postecoglou comes across as an optimist though and it’s more likely that he sees it as the perfect opportunity to turn the club’s fortunes around.
Is there a chink in Manchester City’s defence?
They may be the current European champions and they may have won the last three Premier League titles, but there have been moments to suggest that Manchester City might not be quite as defensively solid as they’ve been in the past.
City’s style has usually been to try and keep the lion’s share of possession, with the logic being it’s hard for the opposition to score without the ball. However, there have been some recent goals against them scored from counter-attacks that will be cause for concern.
Wolves were the first team to beat them this season, with both of their goals coming on the break. In the Champions League, they’ve been stunned by the likes of RB Leipzig and Crvena zvezda at home, which made them dig deep to avoid some embarrassing results.
There’s enough to suggest that this Tottenham team is mature enough to accept that they’ll have to soak up a lot of pressure from the defending champions. If Spurs are successful in doing so, will they be able to pounce on the chances they get?
Recent history favours Spurs
Manchester City have been serial tournament winners in recent years while the Tottenham trophy drought has now hit 15 years. When it comes to their recent head-to-head record though, it’s Spurs who have come out on top more often than not.
Tottenham have won three of their last four meetings with City, including an extraordinary 3-2 win at the Ethihad last year that included an equaliser as well as a winning goal in added time.
City go into this game on the back of two consecutive draws and will feel that they can’t let history repeat itself against Spurs going into the crucial December period.
No stopping the Haaland scoring machine
Death, taxes and Erling Haaland scoring records.
In the last week, the Norwegian became the quickest to score 50 goals in Premier League history as well as the quickest to score 40 goals in UEFA Champions League history.
Every possible milestone looks on the horizon because his scoring makes every milestone not seem far away.
This season, he’s managed to keep up his amazing scoring rate of better than a goal a game despite playing the whole season without Kevin de Bruyne helping him as one of the best goal providers the Premier League has ever seen.
At times, stopping him from scoring seems impossible. That’s why beating Manchester City often seems impossible.
Son to shine?
Harry Kane and Heung-min Son are two very different types of players. However, that hasn’t stopped Son attempting to fill the shoes left by Kane as much as possible.
He’s embraced the position as the new club captain. He’s taken on a different playing role as the main central striker. He’s scored eight goals already this season, which included a hat-trick against Burnley and a brace against Arsenal.
It’s no surprise that Tottenham’s three-game losing streak coincides with Son’s three-game scoring drought. Last week, he extraordinarily had no fewer than three goals dissallowed as offside. This suggests that his barren run is more from a lack of luck than a lack of form.
The South Korean has scored in many important games against City in the past and will relish the opportunity to do so by officially leading from the front.
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