OPPONENTS Manchester City 
COMPETITION Premier League 
DATE Saturday 16th December 2017
VENUE Etihad Stadium
PREVIEW No preview prepared.
PREDICTION Manchester City    2        Tottenham Hotspur    1
LAST SEASON'S MEETING For a look back at the match report, click here.
RESULTS HISTORY Click here for results, match reports and facts on meetings with Manchester City
Vincent Kompany (leg muscle), John Stones (ankle), and  Benjamin Mendy (knee) will miss the Spurs game. 
Toby Alderweireld (hamstring), Victor Wanyama (match fitness) and  Davinson Sanchez (3rd of a 3 game suspension) will not be available to Mauricio Pochettino for the visit to Manchester City .

BT Sport 1 - (live coverage)
Sky Sports 1 -  Game of the Day -  Saturday 20.00
Match of the Day  (BBC 1) - Saturday 22.20 (highlights)   [repeated at 07:35 Sunday]  Also available online.
Goals on Sunday (Sky Sports 1) - Sunday 10.30 (repeated at 21.00)
Match of the Day 2  (BBC 1) - Sunday 22.30 (highlights)  Also available online.

For coverage in all parts of the world, check here and here.

Radio :  
BBC LONDON 94.9FM (London area only), Digital Radio (London area only) &  Sky Channel 0152  (live coverage)
Commentary may be found on
>   BBC Radio Five Live (live coverage)  606/939 MW
TalkSport (DAB or 1089 MW)
Absolute Radio  (1215 AM/MW)

If available on BBC radio, it can supposedly be heard in these countries on these stations ...
Australia (Melbourne)
SEN  -  116 AM  Live Transmissions: TWI, Saturday. 12.45 & 15.00 matches
Australia (Sydney) 
Radio 2  -  1611AM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 12.45 Match
Media Corp Radio  -  93.8 FM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
South Africa 
SABC (Radio 2000)  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
Uganda  Radio 1 (English) 90.0 FM, Radio 2 (Lugandan) 87.9 FM  Live Transmission: TWI, Saturday, 15.00 Match
North America (USA, Canada, Mexico, Caribbean) 
Sirius Satellite Radio  Live transmission: Saturday - 12.45, 15.00 (TWI) & 17.15 (BBC) Sunday - 14.00 & 16.05 (BBC) Mon, Tue, Wed - Various times (BBC)

Internet :
The THFC Official website   Live webcast  - subscribers only
BBC London - click on link to "Listen to Tottenham Hotspur live commentary" on top right hand menu.
TalkSport (DAB or 1089 MW)

Manchester City  4 (1)  

Premier League
Saturday 16th December 2017
Etihad Stadium
Tottenham Hotspur  1 (0)

Kick off 17:30
Gundogan  13m 43s
de Bruyne  92m 11s
Sterling  79m 85s
Sterling  89m 10s
Eriksen  90+2m 11s
Otamendi (foul on Kane)  38
Delph (foul on Trippier)  51



Kane (foul on Sterling)  52
Dembele (persistent fouling)  62
Alli (foul on de Bruyne)  68  
Sissoko (foul on Fernandinho)  90+1 


Crowd :   54,214 Weather :  Dry, chilly, foggy
Referee : Craig Pawson  (South Yorkshire) Assistant Referees :  Mr. L. Betts; Mr. A. Nunn
Fourth Official :  Lee Mason  
- -  kicked off and played towards the - end in the first half.
Game time : -  90 + 7 minutes.
Manchester City : kit Tottenham Hotspur : kit

18  Fabian DELPH     
15  Eqauilim MANGALA
  Nicolas OTAMENDI     
  2  Kyle WALKER

17  Kevin de BRUYNE 
Ilkay GUNDOGAN    (47  Ben FODEN  83)

  7  Raheem STERLING   
10  Sergio AGUERO  (33  Gabriel JESUS  58))
19  Leroy SANE  (20  Bernado SILVA  85)

Unused subs: 
  Claudio BRAVO
42  Yaya TOURE

    1  Hugo LLORIS  (c)

  2  Kieran TRIPPIER
15  Eric DIER
  3  Danny ROSE  (33  Ben DAVIES  89)

19  Mousa DEMBELE     
29  Harry WINKS

23  Christian ERIKSEN

  DELE Alli       (17  Moussa SISSOKO  84     )
  7  Heung-Min SON  (11  Erik LAMELA  77)

10  Harry KANE     

Unused subs: 
13  Michel VORM

24  Serge AURIER
1  Juan FOYTH
18  Fernando LLORENTE

Manager :  Pep Guardiola Manager :  Mauricio Pochettino
Sponsor :   Etihad Airways Shirt sponsor :  AIA
Kit Supplier :  Nike Kit Supplier :   Nike
Match report

Spurs were put to the sword, but were still in the game until the last twenty minutes, when they went to pieces and conceded three more to end up losing 4-1, with Eriksen notching a late consolation.  it was little consolation for a poor performance that failed to trouble the runaway leaders, but it flagged up some of the issues we have had in recent weeks and once more showed that we need to do better against the top sides, as taking points off them will make any challenge we hope to make that much more effective.

Sissoko, Lamela and Aurier dropped out of the side to be replaced by Trippier, Dembele and Dele, with a side set up with a back four and a solid two in front with Winks joining Mousa.  The problem would lie in the speed of transition through the lines to create openings that would hurt City.

The first few minutes were characterised by free-kicks being given either way. Out of them all, only Kevin de Bruyne signalled to the ref that a yellow card should be shown when he was fouled by Dembele. The stuttering start was a result of both sides closing down and pressing the other.

Jan Vertonghen was alert when Sane took on Trippier and his low ball into the near post was blocked away by the Belgian defender. Shortly after that a foul by Rose gave de Bruyne a chance to play it into the near post, where Aguero stooped to head at goal and it went a yard wide, as City enjoyed a spell around the Spurs 18 yard line.

It was bad marking from a corner that gave City the lead, with Gundogan strolling into the box and heading past Lloris from the penalty spot to make Tottenhamís task even harder than it would have been. Set pieces have been our undoing and against a side like City in the form they are in, it was the last thing we needed. It added to the test that everyone had said that this would be for us.

Spurs maintained their shape with Son and Kane in attack, with the ball still being played out by Lloris rather than resorting to long clearances. Rose was lucky when he had two hands in Mangalaís back and it could have been a penalty, but it prefaced a period of City sharp passing and Aguero had a shot that Lloris beat out, the Hugo pushed out another effort from the argentine striker, but unconvincingly so and he was fortunate that a team-mate was centrally placed a few yards out to clear the ball. As City sprayed the ball around, Sane broke into the box, but a heavy touch took it into Lloris and then Sterling had a shot over the bar from inside the box.

Tottenhamís first shot in anger came in the 35th minute, when Kane tried to bend one in from the left, but it went a couple of feet wide, with Ederson struggling. Harry was in the wars again, when he mis-controlled the ball that popped up and Otamendi kicked him in the face with a high boot, which brought a booking for the defender.

Spurs broke onto a long forward ball by Dier and Eriksen almost found Dele with a ball into the six yard box, but Ederson got there first and the home team broke with Aguero getting the ball in the Spurs box, firing in a shot that struck Roseís arm as he threw himself in to block the ball, but a penalty wasnít given and rightly so.

It hadnít been a great performance by Spurs, but at 0-1 at the break, they were still in it. The defending needed to be tighter and the movement of the ball quicker to pose City some problems. Their defence didnít look invincible, so Tottenham needed to test them more rigorously.

Twice at the start of the half Rose was bundled over without a free kick given and it lead to a move that gave City a corner, which Mangala won, but not to any effect. There was a glimmer of a chance when Kane lifted a cross from the left to Son, but Sane got back to deny him a shot. Spurs got a break on when Winks upended Fernandinho, but the ref waved play on and it ended with Kane playing a through ball too hard for Son to get onto. When Delph fouled Trippier and got a yellow card, the free kick was cleared and when it came out Kane fouled Sterling, but even though Pawson had his back to it, he gave a free kick and booked Harry. Spurs were snapping into the tackles and had a long period of possession that led to Kane firing a shot at goal from 20 yards that Ederson had to dive and push past the post.

Guardiola brought on Jesus for Aguero and he almost made an immediate impact with a cross coming in from the right that Lloris got to just before him, then Edersonís pass out to the right wing saw the ball played right to Sane, who lashed his shot well wide.

There was a series of poor passes out from the back, with Hugo passing to Jan, but putting the ball behind him and nearly conceding a corner, then when it eventually came back to Vertonghen, he sliced it into the crowd. We had been caught out here before trying to play out from the back, but the City pressing was putting the pressure on us to hurry our passes, which led to mistakes.

Rose made a good tackle on Sterling on the edge of the box as he looked to move forward and when Sane came inside. His shot was well kept out by Lloris, but it dropped right in front of goal to Sterling, who skied it over the bar. Dele got a yellow for a foul on de Bruyne, having touched the ball first before his momentum carrying over it into the City manís ankle, with Dembele already gone into the book for a string of fouls through the match.

City won the ball on the edge of their own box when Kane let the ball get away from him, de Bruyne was released on the left and he ran Dier into the box and unleashed a fierce shot that Hugo got a hand to, but could not prevent hitting the roof of the net for 2-0.

Winks was having trouble playing the ball forward, as City were shutting down space while Dembele was slow on the ball and too easily dispossessed. It forced a rash tackle from Vertonghen on de Bruyne when he was in the box conceding a penalty. Jesus took it and hit the foot of Llorisí right hand post, with it rebounding into the centre of the box, where Sterling ran in to power the ball over the bar.

Lamela almost made an impact when he came on, with a low cross that dropped for Winks, who had to dribble the ball across the face of goal and could have gone down but stayed on his feet and eventually was barged off the ball by de Bruyne. But it was a simple robbing off Dembele that left de Bruyne to run at Spurs and the ball was played out to the left, where his low ball picked out Sterling at the far post to tap the ball in from close range.

City sub Berbado Silva almost got on the score-sheet when he struck a shot at Llorisí near post from their left and Hugo just got s touch onto it to take it onto the foot of the post. Hugo had to be on his toes when a Spurs move broke down with Lamela being taken out off the ball, with the keeper tipping the shot from Sterling over the bar at full stretch.

When Dier missed the ball on the edge of his own box, Sterling took the ball past Hugo by nudging it through his legs and ran the ball in for 4-0. By then it didnít really matter but the goal difference took a bit of battering.  That was eased a little when Eriksen got the ball and ran from right to left across the 18 yard line, firing an early shot with his left foot to Edersonís left that beat him and settled in the corner. It didnít affect the outcome, but showed what they need to do when playing the top six sides.

The passing and movement was a lesson to Tottenham about what they have to try and achieve. It is like Barcelonaís play, working hard off the ball and when they havenít got it, behind the ball to win it back. That hard work shows what can be created, much like we did to Stoke last week, although City are on a different level to us.

The indecision on the ball caused Spurs problems throughout the game. It was Cityís closing down that caused some of it, but when Spurs were in possession in space, they failed to make the most of the ball that they had. With poor movement off the ball to try and counter the pressing game, they caused few problems for the home defence, with the ball coming back and back. It wasnít just individual mistakes, but a team collective just wasnít working today. Ederson only had one save to make and the City back line would not have had an easier day out all season. It wasnít that we were sitting back to try and stop them scoring, it was just we werenít able to penetrate at all and players were sloppy on the ball and with it. Maybe we were too open, but City have dismantled teams who try to park the bus, so what do you do ?

Last season we took four points from City, when we finished second. This season we canít live with them, as they head for the title before the sound of Jingle Bells fades.

Newton St. John




Manchester City are the first club in world football to be a truly family club as they are owned by the Kuwaiti Royal family.


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What you thought
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Other scores during this week :
Arsenal 1 Newcastle United 0 Saturday
Brighton & Hove Albion 0 Burnley 0 Saturday
Chelsea 1 Southampton 0 Saturday
Leicester City 0 Crystal Palace 3 Saturday
Stoke City 0 West Ham United London 3 Saturday
Watford 1 Huddersfield Town 4 Saturday
West Bromwich Albion 1 Manchester United 2 Sunday
Bournemouth 0 Liverpool 4 Sunday
Everton 3 Swansea City 1 Monday


League Table  2017-18
  P W D L F A Pts GD
1 Manchester City 18 17 1 0 56 12 52 +44
2 Manchester United 18 13 2 3 39 12 42 +27
3 Chelsea 18 12 2 4 32 14 38 +18
4 Liverpool 18 9 7 2 38 20 34 +18
5 Arsenal 18 10 3 5 31 20 33 +11
6 Burnley 18 9 5 4 16 12 32 +4
7 TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR 18 9 4 5 31 18 31 +13
8 Leicester City 18 7 5 6 27 25 26 +2
9 Everton 18 7 4 8 24 30 25 -6
10 Watford 18 6 4 8 27 33 22 -6
11 Huddersfield Town 18 6 3 9 16 30 21 -14
12 Southampton 18 4 6 8 17 24 18 -7
13 Brighton & Hove Albion 18 4 6 8 14 23 18 -9
14 Crystal Palace 18 4 5 9 15 28 17 -13
15 West Ham United London 18 4 5 9 17 32 17 -15
16 AFC Bournemouth 18 4 4 10 15 24 16 -9
17 Stoke City 18 4 4 10 19 40 16 -20
18 Newcastle United 18 4 3 11 16 27 15 -11
19 West Bromwich Albion 18 2 8 8 13 24 14 -11
20 Swansea City 18 3 3 12 10 25 12 -15


Position before match :  6th
Position after match :  7th
Position after the weekend :  7th


* Pub facts may not actually be true, but after a few pints everyone might think so.


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