Tottenham vs. Manchester City
Champions League: Tuesday 09-04-2019 at 20:00 UST (Tottenham Hotspur Stadium)
Odds: Tottenham: 4.33, Draw: 4.00, Manchester City: 1.83
Free Champions League Picks Tottenham vs. Manchester City
Tottenham welcomes Manchester City in their new stadium on Tuesday in the first leg of the Champions league quarterfinals. The Spurs‘ recent form is not really reflective of the team’s talented squad. Indeed, they have lost two of their last three Premier League games, including against 17th-placed Southampton. They have won their last game however, against Crystal Palace for the inauguration of their new stadium. Furthermore, Tottenham players have proven that they can step their game up in important confrontations. For instance, they qualified against Borussia Dortmund in the UCL round-of-16 due notably to an impressive performance at Wembley, 3-0. However, domestically, the Lilywhites have not been as successful. Indeed, they have only managed to pick 7 points out of a possible 27 against other members of the ‘Big Six’. Spurs fans will undoubtedly hope that the prestige of the competition will transcend their idols.
Manchester City are the favourites in this double confrontation and will hope to justify their status Tuesday night. The Citizens are in sparkling form as they haven’t lost a match since the end of January, against Newcastle. As a matter of fact, since then, they have won all their matches, scoring 38 goals and conceding only 7. This stretch of 14 matches includes blowout wins against big teams. Indeed, the Sky Blues dominated Chelsea 6-0 in February and Schalke 7-0 in the previous UCL round. This capacity to catch fire offensively has notably allowed City to score 26 goals in only 8 Champions League games. Defensively, the Citizens are also very impressive. For instance, they have conceded only 33 goals this season in all competitions while having played 51 games. They have also conceded less than 1 goal per game on average in the Premier league. Only Liverpool can boast that record as well. They will be difficult to breach and Tottenham will have a complicated task on Tuesday.
Pochettino will be able to count on most of his players with only Dier and Lamela set to miss out. The Spurs will probably line-up in a 3-1-4-2 with World Champion Hugo Lloris starting in goals. The three centre-backs should be Alderweireld, Sanchez and the man of the match against Dortmund, Vertonghen. To protect the midfield, and like against Liverpool, Pochettino could select Sissoko. The Frenchman’s athleticism and stamina could be a problem for Manchester City to develop their game. In front of him, Eriksen and Alli seem to be logical choices even if Tottenham might not control possession. The wing-backs will probably be Rose on the left and Trippier on the right. Indeed, Aurier might still be in doubt to play 90 minutes following his injury during the international break. Finally, Son and Kane should start the match and should be difficult to handle for City’s defence.
Pep Guardiola will undoubtedly opt for his usual 4-3-3 to face Tottenham. Sergio Aguero is doubtful to start or even play at all, just like former Spur Kyle Walker. However, Mendy is set to come back to the line-up in his left-back position. On the right, Danilo should start, provided Walker is indeed unavailable. The centre-back pairing could be composed of Laporte and Stones unless Otamendi takes the English player’s spot. De Bruyne and David Silva should be on either side of Ilkay Gundogan in the midfield. All three players’ vista will mean that none of them can be ignored by Tottenham’s defence. The offensive line may be composed of Bernardo Silva, Sané and Sterling if Aguero cannot start. Otherwise, Sané should relinquish his spot to the Argentinian goalscorer, with Sterling sliding to the left-wing.
Free Champions League Schedule Manchester City vs. Tottenham
Manchester City are my favourites. They have shown that they are more than capable to step up in big games and have, all in all, a better team. Additionally, Tottenham have struggled against better teams this season and Tuesday might not make exception. The desire to defend the new stadium might not be enough for the Spurs to dominate City. For me, the Citizens will win this match, and could score two or three goals.
PICK: Tottenham 1-3 Manchester City