Well, they don’t get much bigger than this. In what looks likely to be an electrifying affair, Spurs are taking on Manchester City in the first leg of the quarter-finals of the Champions League. There’s reasons to give either team the edge here.
Tottenham have the home advantage. And although they haven’t had the best time in the Premier League as of late, their Champions League form – as we saw from their brilliant 4-0 aggregate win over Dortmund – is something to reckoned with. Not only that but some believe that the relentless pressure of their opponent’s quadruple aspirations also gives them an advantage.
However, if Manchester City are beginning to feel burned out, they certainly haven’t showed it. Were it not for a single loss to Newcastle United, City would be coming into this match undefeated in 2019. Nonetheless, for either side, victory is unlikely to come easy.
Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester City Prediction: Spurs 1-2 Man City
It’s hard to argue for any team to be the likely winner against City right now. Their run, both in terms of performance and results in 2019, has been simply sensational. While Spurs’ brilliant victories over Dortmund would cast them as favourites against most teams, Manchester City are not most teams. We think the quality of City’s game will likely be too much for Tottenham, who have struggled against several less successful teams in recent months. As it’s the first leg, many think a draw is likely. However, we predict City will just about pull through with a 2-1 result to give them the early advantage.
Our recommended tip: Manchester City win
Manchester City are the clear favourites coming into this contest, and it’s no surprise considering just how dominant they have been on the pitch. They may only be one place ahead of Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League standings, but they hold 16 more points than their upcoming opponents, with a nearly completely unblemished record in 2019. At online bookmaker Coral, Spurs fans will find medium-risk 16/5 match odds – although a draw is slightly more likely with 14/5 odds. However, Man City have low-risk 4/5 odds on a win, making a bet on the favourites a safe one.
With well over a hundred matches played between the two beginning in 1909, and only a single victory giving Manchester City the overall historical advantage, there are few teams that have been as evenly-matched over the years as Spurs and City. However, more recent matches have told a different tale, at least for the last couple of years. Manchester City have beaten Tottenham in their three most recent outings, twice in 2018 and once in 2017. Spurs did manage similar dominance in 2015/16 with three wins in a row themselves. But, considering their victories are more recent, City have to take the advantage here.
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Players to watch: Son Heung-min & Sergio Agüero
Tottenham Hotspur: Son Heung-min
In his last outings for Spurs, Son Heung-min made history as the first player to score in the team’s brand new billion-dollar stadium against Crystal Palace. Of course, he has been a vital asset for Tottenham for quite some time now, with his record as a goalscorer for Spurs in the Premier League only being bested by the brilliance of Harry Kane. With so much talent at this club, the very fact that Son consistently stands out is a testament to his abilities.
Manchester City: Sergio Agüero
Many of the doubts surrounding Manchester City heading into this match are related to the fitness of Sergio Agüero. He had to miss their contest against Brighton due to injury, and his status for this match remains unknown. He is the player to watch to see whether he plays at all and if he does, whether he starts the game. So much of City’s strategy will depend on it.