Mark Lawrenson expects a comfortable win for Manchester City against Tottenham, insisting that it would take something special from Antonio Conte’s men to even come away with a point from the Etihad.
Tottenham will be low on confidence heading into what is, on paper, their most difficult test of the Premier League season, after two back-to-back home losses against Southampton and Wolves.
Spurs also lost to Chelsea before the winter break, meaning a defeat in Manchester would make for a hopeless four defeats on the bounce.
As such, the Tottenham head coach has also all but ruled out the club’s chances of finishing in the top four this season (beIN SPORTS).
Lawrenson has suggested that the Spurs squad might not be in a good psychological state heading into their clash against City and backed Pep Guardiola’s men to ease to a win.
The pundit told BBC Sport: “Tottenham beat Manchester City on the opening weekend of the season, but there are plenty of reasons it has not turned into the campaign that Spurs fans would have hoped for on the back of that result.
“Antonio Conte started really well when he replaced Nuno Espirito Santo as Tottenham manager in November, but their recent form and results have been poor.
“I don’t think they are strong enough defensively but, more than anything, I am just not sure what sort of state they are in psychologically, because all does not seem very happy in their camp.
“City? Well they just keep on winning. They took Sporting Lisbon apart in style on Tuesday and it will take something special from Tottenham to get something at Etihad Stadium. I don’t see it happening. Prediction: 2-0.”
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The one silver lining for Spurs heading into Saturday’s clash is the fact that we will not be expected to be on the front foot. In Conte’s system, we are evidently much more comfortable when we play on the counter and do not have to press high to win the ball.
So, we might get a few opportunities to hurt City on the break. However, we have to defend much better than we have been recently to come away with anything from the game. Hopefully, Dier’s return will help us be more organised at the back.
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