We’ve only seen one weekend of the Premier League so far but on the evidence so far, Manchester City will be very happy with their work and now we get to see them tested properly against Tottenham at the Etihad.
It’s a new season but it was the same old result for City at West Ham. Another visit to the London Stadium brought another trashing, as they added a 5-0 win to 4-1 and 4-0 successes in the last two seasons. Raheem Sterling took the headlines with a hat-trick but Riyad Mahrez gave one of his best performances in a City shirt with three assists as well as a central hand in the other two goals whilst Kevin de Bryune had the feel of a new signing once again as he kicked into top gear in the second half too.
Gabriel Jesus took advantage of his chances upfront with an excellent showing and with even David Silva showing excellent touches, they looked just as formidable as ever.
Tottenham made harder work of getting past Aston Villa than their 3-1 scoreline suggested but they were deserving winners regardless of the fact they were behind for over an hour. Three goals in the last 17 minutes, two of them from Harry Kane, earned them three points but they had been pouring on the pressure after the crucial re-introduction of Christian Eriksen, who turned the game in Spurs’ favour.
Man City v Tottenham Hotspur
17:30 Sky Sports Premier League / Sky Sports Main Event / Sky Sports Ultra HD
HEAD TO HEAD RECORD
(Maximum 10 matches)
APR 2019 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 1-0 Tottenham
APR 2019 CHAMPIONS LEAGUE Manchester City 4-3 Tottenham
APR 2019 CHAMPIONS LEAGUE Tottenham 1-0 Manchester City
OCT 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 0-1 Manchester City
APR 2018 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 1-3 Manchester City
DEC 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 4-1 Tottenham
JAN 2017 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 2-2 Tottenham
OCT 2016 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 2-0 Manchester City
FEB 2016 PREMIER LEAGUE Manchester City 1-2 Tottenham
SEP 2015 PREMIER LEAGUE Tottenham 4-1 Manchester City
Before judging Spurs too harshly on their performance before Erisken returned, it’s worth remembering that they were without Son Heung-min, Dele Alli, Ryan Sessegnon and Giovani lo Celso due to either injury or fitness concerns and their stats from that performance were thoroughly dominant. Spurs had 31 shots to Villa’s seven, won the corners count 14-0, the shots on target count 7-4 and also had an expected goals return of 2.6 to 0.8 for Villa, so Spurs fans ought not to worry too much just yet.
They can also take heart from the fact that West Ham – a side who were 19 points inferior to Spurs last season – did manage to exert early pressure on City, and last season Spurs held their own against City, going down only 1-0 in both Premier League ties and knocking them out in that amazing Champions League tie, when City won the home leg 4-3 but went out on away goals.
From the little evidence we’ve seen, City seem to be up and running faster, but Spurs should still fancy their chances of making an impact and playing on the break should really suit them, as it did in Europe last season.
City, with the advantage in personnel as well as home advantage, should prove to be too strong but it would be a surprise if Spurs couldn’t give them more of a challenge than West Ham did. However, City have won their last 14 games in all competitions at the Etihad and there wasn’t a single Premier League home game last season when they didn’t score and in 16 of those 19 games they scored twice. It’s no surprise, therefore, to learn that 13 of City’s 19 home league matches last season contained three goals or more. The 17/20 that they win with Over 2.5 goals may be the best way to play this.
RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-100 points)
BACK Manchester City and Over 2.5 goals 5 points at 17/20 with starsports.bet
PROFIT/LOSS SINCE JAN 1 2017: PROFIT 255.07 points
(excluding Ryan Sidebottom Ashes bet (c/f double and Ashes preview outright and Second Test), Political Bets posted 8 August, Premier League ante-post, BMW Championship)