The Premier Leagues only unbeaten teams, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City lock horns in a top-of-the-table clash at White Hart Lane. City’s flawless record was broken in the thrilling 3-3 Champions League draw at Celtic last Wednesday but there is little doubt their reputation as the Premier League’s team to beat precedes them.
Tottenham have been used to playing deep-sitting, counterattacking opponents in recent weeks but they know that City will fight to control the ball. An open, high-tempo showdown looms, which will be scrutinised for title pointers.
Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino could have four first-team players back for today’s crunch match against Manchester City. Eric Dier, Moussa Dembele and Danny Rose will all be assessed as they near returns from hamstring injuries while Moussa Sissoko may also feature after taking a bang on the head last weekend.
Pochettino’s first ever win as a manager came when Espanyol beat Pep Guardiola’s Barcelona at the Nou Camp in 2009, and the Argentinian will hope to inflict a first defeat on the Spaniard’s City this season.
Guardiola’s reign in Manchester began with 10 straight wins, a run which was halted by a 3-3 draw with Celtic in the Champions League on Wednesday. City’s 100 per cent start in the league sees them four points clear of second-placed Spurs ahead of the showdown.
Tottenham striker Harry Kane remains out with an ankle injury, meaning summer signing Vincent Janssen is likely to start again up front. Guardiola has reported no new injury worries for City’s trip to The club are still assessing the extent of the injuries afflicting Kevin De Bruyne, Vincent Kompany and Fabian Delph in order to determine how long they will remain on the sidelines.
The Belgians are receiving treatment for hamstring and groin problems respectively, but it is hoped Delph’s muscle injury will clear up by the end of the international break. Nolito will be suspended, following his red card at Bournemouth.
Spurs have won 22 of their 38 Premier League games against City; should they win this game, they will have beaten them more often than they’ve defeated any other side (currently tied with 22 wins v Everton). Spurs beat City 4-1 in last season’s league fixture at White Hart Lane
Guardiola needs a win from this game to break the record for best winning starts to a managerial career in the Premier League (currently tied with Carlo Ancelotti on six).
Sergio Aguero has scored 28 goals in his last 27 Premier League appearances for City. Meanwhile four of Heung-Min Son’s eight Premier League goals have come in his last 229 minutes of action for Spurs.
Aguero’s mins-per-goal rate of one every 106 minutes is the best rate in Premier League history, 15 minutes quicker than Thierry Henry in second place. Aguero now has as many Premier League goals as Paul Scholes (107), but in 345 fewer games.