Cape Town - Arsenal. Liverpool. Chelsea. Manchester
All, in theory at least, Premier League title contenders. Also the
names of teams that Manchester City have tossed aside this season as they
continue to build an insurmountable lead at the top of the table.
Roll on Tottenham Hotspur. A side currently
experiencing something of a wobble in form which has seen them slipping as low
as seventh in recent weeks. Don’t forget that the blip in form began at rivals
Arsenal when the Lilywhites arrived as kings and left as paupers.
History at least offers something of a glimpse
at an upset with Spurs winning 23 of the 40 clashes between the sides with 10
coming on the road. By contrast, City have won this league fixture just 11
times with the last coming in May 2015.
For neutrals and for fans of the sides that
have already been swept aside, it is up to Harry Kane and his aides to somehow
manufacture a win against Pep’s machine. How? Well that’s not exactly clear
with City at home and seemingly invincible - should they win on Saturday then
they could well be on course to become the next Invincibles.
One way to get a foothold in the game is by
attacking Fabian Delph’s flank and exposing him as the makeshift defender he is. The visitors
certainly have enough in the tank to do that but with their league position
floating further away from the top four, it remains to be seen whether Mauricio
Pochettino will take the risk of sending his men out to attack.
Getting on top of Delph could expose his
fellow defenders but it could also allow City to hit them on the break.
Allowing Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus any sort of space
could prove disastrous - just ask Liverpool who were walloped 5-1.
City have won 15 games in a row and will make
it 16 on Saturday. It will most likely be a cagey affair (it is 3-1 to be a
draw in the first half and City to win the game) to start with before the match
kicks into overdrive before the home side runs away with it without conceding (City are 7-1 to win 2-0).
Like many say, two teams play for 90 minutes and at the end Manchester City win - don’t expect that to change at the Etihad.
Odds: Manchester City v Spurs