Football Previews

Man City v Spurs preview, predictions & possible XIs

By Steve Jennings

Published: 11:46, 16 August 2019

Manchester City and Tottenham Hotspur will both be looking to make it two wins out of two when they go head-to-head at the Etihad on Saturday.

The champions made the ideal start to their title defence on the opening weekend by winning 5-0 at West Ham United, with Raheem Sterling bagging a hat-trick to add to goals from Gabriel Jesus and Sergio Aguero.

Hours later, Spurs came from a goal down to beat newly-promoted Aston Villa 3-1 in north London. Tanguy Ndombele scored the equaliser on his debut before a Harry Kane brace secured the points for Mauricio Pochettino’s men.

But which title challenger learned more from last season’s barnstorming Champions League quarter-final double-header between the sides?

Read on for our predictions, key players, TV info and team news.

When is Man City v Spurs and where can I watch live?

Competition: Premier League

Venue: Etihad Stadium

Date: Saturday, 17 August

Kick-off: 5.30 PM BST

TV coverage (UK): Sky Sports Main Event & Sky Sports Premier League

Last five meetings: Man City v Spurs

20 April 2019: Man City 1-0 Spurs (Premier League)

17 April 2019: Man City 4-3 Spurs (Champions League)

9 April 2019: Spurs 1-0 Man City (Champions League)

29 October 2018: Spurs 0-1 Man City (Premier League)

14 April 2018: Spurs 1-3 Man City (Premier League)

Aggregate score: Man City (WWLWW) 9-5 Spurs (LLWLL)

Ones to watch

Man City: Raheem Sterling

Sterling picked up where he left off last season with an outstanding hat-trick against West Ham. The forward would have had an assist to his name too if not for a narrow VAR offside call, so he’ll be eager to make up for it against Spurs. Of course, Sterling bagged what he thought was the winner at the death in last season’s Champions League quarter-final clash between the sides, only for VAR to silence the Etihad. It would have been his hat-trick on the night – will he rid himself of that lingering pain on Saturday?

Key stat: Against West Ham, Sterling became the first player to score an opening weekend hat-trick in the Premier League since Didier Drogba in 2010/11.

Raheem Sterling with his hat-trick ball after Man City's thumping of West Ham

Spurs: Christian Eriksen

If Tottenham fans were already worried about how they would cope without Christian Eriksen were he to leave before the end of the month, their fears will have grown after last weekend. Spurs struggled to break Villa down until the Dane’s introduction in the 64th minute. The Londoners suddenly looked far more incisive as Eriksen’s presence made Villa crumble. Spurs had 12 shots before he came on and 19 after. If the visitors are to get anything at the Etihad, Eriksen simply must start.

Key stat: Eriksen created at least 24 more chances (73) than any other Tottenham player in the Premier League last season.

Team news

Manchester City

Pep Guardiola started with Bernardo Silva and Sergio Aguero on the bench at West Ham. Both could come back into the starting line-up this weekend, as could possible debutant Joao Cancelo – although Kyle Walker is more likely to start.

Fernandinho is has been confirmed as fit but  lacking match fitness meaning Rodri will almost certainly make his home debut, while Leroy Sane will be sidelined for the next several months with a knee injury.

Predicted XI: Ederson; Walker, Stones, Laporte, Zinchenko; Rodri, De Bruyne, David Silva; Bernardo, Aguero, Sterling

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Doubts over Jan Vertonghen’s fitness remain after he was left out of the matchday 18 against Villa. Juan Foyth is out with an ankle injury and suspension but Toby Alderweireld is available despite uncertainty over his future.

Ben Davies is still recovering from groin surgery while new boy Ryan Sessegnon (hamstring) is unavailable. Further forward, Giovani Lo Celso is in line to make his first appearance for Spurs following his deadline day arrival from Real Betis, though he may have to settling with starting on the bench.

Predicted XI: Lloris; Walker-Peters, Alderweireld, Sanchez, Rose; Sissoko, Winks, Ndombele; Eriksen; Kane, Lucas

Squawka prediction

Tottenham figured out how to beat Manchester City over two legs in Europe last season, but Pochettino has generally struggled against Guardiola domestically. City were far too sharp for West Ham on the opening weekend and they should have too much for Spurs. Even with Eriksen and Kane fit and firing, uncertainty at centre-back might be the visitors’ undoing, while Raheem Sterling is likely to win his personal battle with Kyle Walker-Peters.

Man City 3-1 Tottenham


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