Manchester City will be looking to move a step closer to clinching the Premier League title with victory over a Harry Kane-less Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday.
The Citizens are second in the Premier League table, two points behind Liverpool with a game in hand, leaving the destiny of the title in their hands.
Pep Guardiola’s side are overwhelming favourites to claim three points, but can Spurs defy the odds and cause an upset? Find out what our Editor thinks.
*Please note that this article was written prior to these sides’ second leg UEFA Champions League quarter-final clash on Wednesday 17 April.
Man City 7/20
Guardiola’s side will be aiming to become the first team to win back-to-back Premier League titles since Manchester United in 2008/09. If the Citizens win their remaining five fixtures, they will retain their title.
However, their fate could be decided in their next two fixtures against Tottenham (home) and Manchester United (away). Spurs beat City 1-0 in the first leg of the UEFA Champions League quarter-final last week, while Manchester United are yet to lose a league game at Old Trafford under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
The Citizens are priced at 7/20 to beat Spurs on Saturday. The odds are extremely short but the bookmakers aren’t taking any chances by giving City value. The defending Premier League champions have been at their scintillating best at the Etihad Stadium.
Despite Liverpool being the only unbeaten team at home in the league, City have collected the most points on their turf (48) with 16 wins and one defeat compared to the Reds’ 15 wins and two draws, earning 47. Guardiola’s side are riding a 12-match winning streak at the Etihad Stadium in all competitions, including victories over Liverpool, Wolves, Arsenal and Chelsea.
Sergio Aguero and Raheem Sterling have scored 19 and 17 goals respectively this term and the pair will look to wreak havoc on Spurs’ defence.
Tottenham face a daunting trip to the Etihad Stadium in desperate need of maximum points to boost their top four hopes. Mauricio Pochettino’s side are third in the Premier League table, a point ahead of fourth-placed Arsenal and fifth-placed Chelsea – who have played a game more – and three clear of Manchester United.
This will be the sixth time that Pochettino and Guardiola face each other in the Premier League. Their first encounter came in October 2016 when Pochettino watched his side clinch a 2-0 victory at White Hart Lane, now revamped into the ‘Tottenham Hotspur Stadium’. Since then, however, Guardiola’s side have dominated, drawing once before three straight victories. Spurs will be desperate to end that streak and after beating City 1-0 in the Champions League last week, Pochettino’s side will fancy their chances.
The big question is: can Spurs do it without Kane? To go to one of the toughest grounds in world football without their top goalscorer and stop the defending Premier League champions? If they do, it would be one of the biggest results of the season.
There’s a lot of nonsense going around about Tottenham being better off without Kane. That isn’t even worth debating no matter what the stats may say. The England star is on course to finish the campaign as the club’s top scorer for the fifth consecutive season and his goals have won his side seven points – none of his team-mates can better, or even match that.
The north London club may have looked good without Kane last weekend with Lucas Moura netting a hat-trick in a 4-0 win, but after all that was against relegated Huddersfield, who have been the worst team in the league. Now Spurs are up against the best, without their best.
Manchester City: 4-3-3
Ederson; Walker, Stones, Laporte, Mendy; Fernandinho, Bernardo Silva, De Bruyne; Sterling, Aguero, Sane.
Lloris; Trippier, Alderweireld, Vertonghen, Rose; Winks, Sissoko; Eriksen, Alli, Moura; Son.
Prediction: Aguero to Score First & Man City to win (TBA)
I do think City are priced up way too short here, but I’m still confident that they’ll win. For value, get on Hollywoodbets’ Price Boosts & Specials and take Aguero to Score First & Man City to win.
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