Spurs and Man City produced a frantic end-to-end game at Wembley Stadium on Monday night, with the Premier League champions winning the match 1-0.
The solitary goal of the game came in the opening 5 minutes from Riyad Mahrez. It was not a typical free-flowing attacking move from Man City and instead the source for the goal came from a clearance by goalkeeper Ederson after Kieran Trippier misjudged the flight of the ball, which allowed Raheem Sterling behind the Spurs defence. The England star did brilliantly well to drive into the Spurs box and unselfishly laid the ball back to Riyad Mahrez. The former Leicester player could not miss and was a fitting goalscorer given the events of the past few days at the King Power Stadium. Mahrez dedicated his goal to Leicester owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha.
On a difficult Wembley surface, because of the NFL match which was played a day before, Spurs did well to not be blown away by Man City, like so many teams have been by Pep Guardiola’s team. Man City were immediately on the front foot after their goal and only a minute later Sergio Aguero went close but skewed his shot into the side netting.
Riyad Mahrez Defeats Spurs
"The boss (Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha) was very special to me. I spent four and a half years there.
"I have many memories of him. He was such a good person; a good human.
— Manchester City (@ManCity) October 29, 2018
However that was not a sign of things to come as straight away Harry Kane had a chance to level things for Spurs. After being played in by Erik Lamela, the England captain had a shot from outside the Man City area that deflected off John Stones. The deflection caught Ederson off guard but had enough on it to whistle over the bar and keep the scoreline at 1-0. Still before the 10 minute mark Spurs had another chance to score, however Toby Alderweireld could only direct Kieran Trippier’s corner into the gloves of Ederson.
Man City made some uncharacteristic defence errors during the course of the match with Benjamin Mendy in particular a culprit. The French left back completely missed a through ball to Moussa Sissoko which allowed him time and space as he entered the Man City box. However he could not find the perfect ball with Lucas Moura, Kane and Lamela all waiting and so once more Man City were let off the hook.
Soon after, Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris was called into action for the first real time in the game. The Spurs captain did well to save Mahrez’ shot at his near post, which looked like it was going to double City’s lead.
Goals conceded in PL by @ManCity this season
v Arsenal ❌
v Huddersfield – Stankovic
v Wolves – Boly
v Newcastle – Yedlin
v Fulham ❌
v Cardiff ❌
v Brighton ❌
v Liverpool ❌
v Burnley ❌
v Tottenham ❌
6 successive clean sheets. All 3 goals conceded were scored by defenders
— Sky Sports Statto (@SkySportsStatto) October 29, 2018
But once more Spurs did not let the chances going Man City’s way impact the way they played. Harry Kane was the next Spurs player to have a chance. He was put through on goal after a great reverse pass by Erik Lamela, again on the back of some poor City defending. But once more Spurs could not get level as Kane took a heavy touch, which allowed Ederson to come off his line up and intercept.
Into the second half, Man City had a golden chance to increase their lead. Instead of shooting, David Silva instead teed up Raheem Sterling, whose shot was blocked on the line by Kieran Trippier. The chance should have really been taken after Bernardo Silva had done all the hard work and the frustrations of Pep Guardiola were understandable as Spurs were still in the match.
Yet as the half went on Spurs rallied and had more chances to get their equaliser. The first came from Lamela, who dispossessed Kevin De Bruyne before trying to bend his effort into the corner but the ball sailed wide. It also was the Argentine, in such good form for Spurs this season, who had a golden opportunity to level things for Spurs with 10 minutes left. After good work from Lucas Moura and Dele Alli, the Spurs substitute put a perfect pass into Lamela. However his attempt to guide the ball goalwards was not fruitful as his shot went over, much to the disbelief of his team mates and manager. The pitch may not have aided his cause, nonetheless it was a chance that should have really been taken.
Spurs tried their upmost after that key opportunity to equalise but it was not to be as Man City kept up their incredible defensive Premier League record this season.
Spurs v Man City Lineups
What the Managers Said
Spurs Head Coach Mauricio Pochettino
“The circumstances of the pitch for both sides was the same. I think it was a very competitive game. We conceded a goal so early in the game, so cheap and poor, that you cannot concede in these type of games. If not football punishes you. But I am so proud, I think the effort we made was fantastic. We were very competitive, it was an even game. I think we created a lot of chances.
Last season it was difficult to compete against Man City in both games that we played in Manchester and here, the gap and the level was massive between both teams. But today it was very competitive, an even game. Yes a little bit lucky because when they made a mistake we didn’t score and when we did they scored in one action. Disappointed in one way with the result, but happy with the performance.” (football.london)
Man City Head Coach Pep Guardiola
“I felt that when I played against Tottenham in White Hart Lane in my first year, we lost 2-0 and we could have lost 4-0. Then I realise how physical they were and that is why I give them a lot of credit in playing the way we played because it is something incredible, the way we played in that condition, so I give them a lot of credit.”
“Tottenham is one of the teams I admire the most for the way they play, I think the grass today did not help them either, they have a lot of quality to play. Harry Winks came on the pitch and changed the game so they are an exceptional team.” (football.london)
Spurs v Man City Man of the Match
Moussa Sissoko vs Manchester City:
Most interceptions made
Most aerial duels won
100% dribble success rate
100% tackle success rate
82% pass success rate pic.twitter.com/QzmG3fPvSB
— bet365 (@bet365) October 29, 2018
The man of the match for Spurs was Moussa Sissoko. The Frenchman was relentless all night, winning tackles in defence and bursting forward at any opportunity he had. He should have done better when he failed to pick out a teammate through on goal in the first half but that aside it was an impressive performance from him. Mousa Dembele was also encouraging in the centre of midfield for Spurs, showing signs of the old Dembele which will undoubtedly please Pochettino.
What’s Next for Spurs
Spurs are in action immediately as the face West Ham on Wednesday in the Carabao Cup. Mauricio Pochettino is expected to rotate his squad for that one, as Spurs are again in action at the weekend with a trip to Molineux to face Wolves in the Premier League.
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