PREVIEW: City vs Spurs

Robert Pollard

City play Spurs on Sunday at 1.30pm in a crucial match. Here’s all you need to know ahead of the game at the Etihad.

Tickets Sold out

Last season Man City 3 Tottenham 2

Referee Michael Oliver

Team News

For City, David Silva is nearing full fitness again and may play a part on Sunday, although he is highly unlikely to start the match. Given his importance, it wouldn’t be a surprise if Mancini decided not to risk him at all for this one. Lescott is also doubtful with a back injury, whilst Milner, Richards and Rodwell remain sidelined.

Spurs are hoping to have Jake Livermore and influential midfielder Sandro available for the game. Sandro is recovering from a calf injury but looks set to play a part. Impressive summer signing Mousa Dembele (thigh) will miss the match, as will Scott Parker who has an Achilles problem and won’t be back until November. Assou-Ekotto and Kaboul are also out.

Stats

Only Arsenal and Chelsea (both 10) have won more Premier League games at City than Tottenham Hotspur, who have beaten us on our own ground 9 times.

City have won their last 3 Premier League games against Tottenham Hotspur but had only won 1 of their previous 15 meetings before that.

Samir Nasri has assisted 3 goals and scored 3 goals in his last 4 games against Tottenham Hotspur.

Samir Nasri completed 62 passes in his opponent’s half in the game against West Ham, the most by a player in a single game this season.

As well as being one of City’s main attacking threats, the Frenchman has been showing greater work rate and has covered the most miles out of any City player in 4 of his 8 appearances.

Carlos Tevez has consistently been producing some fine performances this season for Roberto Mancini’s side. He ranks second on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index with 6.

Yaya Toure continues to be City’s driving force in midfield. The Ivorian has made 444 passes in the opponents half this season, second only to Arsenal’s Santi Carzorla (465).

City remain unbeaten at home in 34 matches in the league.

Tottenham are looking to secure their fourth away win in succession. If they achieve that, it will be the first time since 1989 they have won four straight matches away from the Lane.

After Harry Redknapp was heavily criticised by Spurs fans for being too rigid in terms of team selection, this year they have used more players than any other Premier League side this far (25).

Sandro has been Tottenham’s defensive rock this season, successfully completing 23 tackles, the most of any Spurs’ player.

Whilst currently being deservedly lauded for his potent finishing this season, Jermain Defoe has also provided the most assists of any Spurs player this season with 3.

Gareth Bale continues to be the primary outlet for most of Tottenham’s attacking play this season. The destructive Welshman has delivered 35 crosses this season, placing him 3rd on the EA SPORTS Player Performance Index.

Clint Dempsey put in a strong performance last week against Wigan despite the loss, covering 6.58miles.

Stats courtesy of By Far The Greatest Team & Opta City

Press Conferences

David Platt took this press conference, giving manager Roberto Mancini a (much needed?) rest. The full video is available below but here are the major quotes from Platt, with his view of Mancini’s decision to approach the referee on the pitch after the Ajax game on Tuesday night:

I don’t think he is the first manager to go on to the pitch. He wears his heart on his sleeve. Why wouldn’t the manager of a football club be frustrated? Why wouldn’t we all be frustrated?

Robbie has gone onto the pitch and spoken to the referee. As he comes back, he turns around and has a camera in front of his face for 30 yards. He turns around and says, in English, that basically it is enough now.

People then want to start talking about what has happened and almost exaggerating the incident.

Andre Villas-Boas faced the media after his side’s Europa League win; a match which saw them play 4-4-2 for the first time this season and look more threatening going forward. He said:

We’re still a team that creates a lot of attacking opportunities with one striker,” said Villas-Boas. We go four steps up in competition [on Sunday], it’s a different scenario.

It was a good performance, it was important for us to bounce back. To do it in such a good manner was fantastic.

At the weekend we play the champions of England [who are] a totally different proposition. They will want to bounce back after a run of bad results.

City have two days extra than us, this is the main difference. The reality is they have that extra freshness.

But there is enough time to recover. The body takes 48 hours to recover from physical effort and we’ll be able to make that recovery.

Inside the Opposition

Don’t forget to check out our pre-match interviews with three Spurs fans: Spooky, Jack Howes and the wonderful Jack McInroy for the inside view of Spurs.

Fixtures

(3pm unless otherwise stated)

Saturday

Arsenal v Fulham

Everton v Sunderland

Reading v Norwich

Southampton v Swansea

Stoke v QPR

Wigan v West Brom

Villa v Manchester United (5.30pm)

Sunday

City v Tottenham (1.30pm)

Newcastle v West Ham

Chelsea v Liverpool (4pm)

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