Tottenham came to the Etihad looking to capitalise upon Liverpool’s defeat to Swansea earlier on Saturday, looking to gain some ground and push away from Klopp’s team. It was a recently familiar back three that lined up in defence for Spurs, with Kevin Wimmer coming into the side replacing the injured Jan Vertonghen. Pep Guardiola made three changes to his side that was thumped 4-0 at Everton last week, bringing in Zabaleta, Kolarov, and Sane.
The first half began with City on the front foot having the majority of the ball, however Spurs did have the first major chance of the game, as the ball fell to Danny Rose on the left hand side however his cross was cleared away from danger. It was clear to see that Dele Alli had been instructed to press Claudio Bravo due to his poor recent form and the fact that he is unsteady on the ball (conceding 14 goals from the last 22 shots he has faced). Chances soon started falling for City and it was Zabaleta who had the first major chance in the game just after 10 minutes of action – this was soon followed up by two yellow cards for Tottenham players, as Wimmer brought down Zabaleta himself, and Eric Dier also picked up a yellow. This was an issue for Spurs as so early on in the game, two of their three defenders were booked. As the game progressed it was looking increasingly certain that City were bound to score the first goal of the game, and that chance nearly fell to Pablo Zabaleta, his shot had Hugo Lloris rooted to the spot as it fizzed past his post. Just before half time two great chances fell to Sergio Aguero, a fine shot was saved by Hugo Lloris and a header was also caught by Lloris at his near post. Spurs went into half time level with Manchester City, requiring immediate improvement in order to get something from this game.
The second half began with the news that Kevin Wimmer had been replaced by Heung Min Son. This substitution turned Spurs into a much more attacking side, hoping to cause a threat to this rather weak Manchester City defence. However, in the 49th minute, Leroy Sane was through 1 on 1 with Hugo Lloris, who came rushing out of his boxing and opted to head the ball, however the ball rebounded straight off of Sane and left him with an open goal to tap the ball into, City had got the lead that was coming and that was long overdue. 5 minutes after, Kevin De Bruyne doubled the lead after Hugo Lloris spilled a cross providing another simple finish from a Manchester City player, and another costly error by Lloris in this game. Providing the way that Manchester City were playing, it looked as if the game was over and won for Guardiola’s men, however on the hour mark Kyle Walker curled in a delightful cross which met the head of Dele Alli which put Spurs back into the game and set up an interesting final half an hour. Spurs’ comeback was soon halted when Toby Alderweireld had to come off for Harry Winks due to a tight hamstring. Raheem Sterling was also through 1 on 1 when Kyle Walker used his arm in order to distract Sterling from shooting, referee Andre Marriner said no penalty however this proved to be the most controversial moment of the game, as sixty seconds after this incident, Heung Min Son fired a low shot past Claudio Bravo, equalising the game for Spurs. At this stage there was still a huge belief that this game could be won or lost, and it was nearly the latter when Gabriel Jesus arrived at the far post to tap home what appeared to be the winner in the 83rd minute, however he was correctly ruled offside.
Tottenham left Manchester with a point which will seem like a blessing due to the poor performance that they put in today. Great fight to come back from 2-0 down, however both the City goals were caused from a Hugo Lloris error and therefore were preventable but a draw keeps Spurs in the title hunt.
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