|Modric: Key to winning the midfield battle.|
The first big match on "Super Sunday" sees White Hart Lane play host to the ever burgeoning Man City squad in a match that has proven to be a Champions League decider over the last two seasons. It is still early days but Tottenham will be wary of slipping too far behind the pacesetters as they look to secure a place in Europe again next season.
To Win (90 Min):
Man City 14/10
Let's be honest, Tottenham looked well below par, to put it lightly, in their 3-0 capitulation at the hands of Man Utd on Monday. They were overrun in the midfield and didn't seem to have an outlet upfront with Jermain Defoe and Rafael Van Der Vaart looking out of sorts. Harry Redknapp rested the big names on Thursday and he will be buoyed by the news that Luka Modric should be staying at the Lane for at least one more season. The crafty Croatian will be key if they are to run with the big dogs again this season.
The blue moon is rising. There is no doubt that with the wealth of riches available to him, Roberto Mancini has assembled a side capable of challenging for the title. He has added one more face to his ever growing list of stars with the addition of French playmaker Samir Nasri, who could make his debut on Sunday. He will expect a hostile reception from the Tottenham fans due to his links to their North London rivals Arsenal. Roberto Mancini has loosened the reigns so far this season, allowing his team to play an expansive style of football. The question is will his Italian, defence first approach rear its ugly, dull head when it comes to the big games? I have a slight suspicion that it will do just that.
Having a look at previous matches between these two we see that Man City have not won at the Lane since '03 when a 20 year old Joey Barton got the winner in a 2-0 victory. Tottenham have lost only once to top 10 opposition at home over the last two seasons, proving that White Hart Lane is not the easiest place to pick up a win.
Best bet: Under 2.5 goals (19/20)
With only 2 goals scored in the last 3 fixtures between these teams, both by Peter Crouch, I don't expect there to be too many goals on offer here. I expect Roberto Mancini to revert back to his usual defensive minded tactics of playing 2 holding midfielders which will greatly decrease the chance of goals for both teams. A tight affair could be on the cards.
Verdict: Draw (9/4)
I have been dwelling over this one for quite some time and I'm still not sure it is the right call. Man City won only once on the road against the top half last season and much will depend on Roberto Mancini's tactics for this match which hindered them at times. With Luka Modric back in the side, Tottenham look to have a better balance about them and are capable of pulling off a draw here. However if Roberto Mancini decides to go for it, Spurs are there for the taking.
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Written by @CommodoreVegas. Follow him and @Hollywoodbets on Twitter today!