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Manchester City lost ground in the Premier League title race at the weekend
Tottenham Hotspur were defeated by Arsenal and remain outside the top four
Both teams will be looking to bounce back at the Etihad Stadium on Thursday
The odds for Manchester City vs Tottenham Hotspur are taken from the DraftKings sportsbook, which currently has an offer of a deposit bonus up to $1000.
This should be an entertaining encounter but the Premier League champions have what it takes to come out on top.
Back Manchester City to win and over 2.5 goals in this rearranged fixture on Thursday. (-115)
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With an hour on the clock at Old Trafford on Saturday, Jack Grealish broke the deadlock in favor of the visitors. His header from Kevin De Bruyne’s cross was just a reward for Manchester City’s dominant start to the second half. With a win across town, Pep Guardiola’s side would have piled the pressure on Arsenal in the Premier League title race.
Unfortunately for City, things did not go to plan thereafter. Bruno Fernandes scored an equalizer in controversial fashion before Marcus Rashford completed the turnaround to give Manchester United their ninth consecutive win in all competitions.
That result leaves City with the ground to make up, especially after Arsenal emerged victorious on Sunday (more on which later).
City are now eight points adrift of the summit of the standings. They may well be third by the time this match kicks off: Manchester United, currently a point behind their neighbors, are due to face Crystal Palace on Wednesday.
On the plus side, the fixture scheduling means City have another opportunity to apply some pressure on Arsenal. Guardiola’s side will play twice by the time the Gunners are next in action. Win both games and City will have closed the gap to just two points, albeit while having played more matches than Mikel Arteta’s men.
First, though, City must focus on improving their performance levels. Fernandes’s equalizer may have been contentious but United were good value for all three points on Saturday.
That loss means City have now dropped points in three of their last five top-flight outings, while they also suffered a shock defeat by Southampton in the EFL Cup last week. If Guardiola’s men continue to slip up on a regular basis, they will give themselves too much to do in the fight for the title.
At least Manchester City are not alone in needing to recover from derby-day disappointment. Tottenham Hotspur also faced their arch-rivals at the weekend - and they too were defeated, going down 2-0 to Arsenal in front of their own fans.
Not for the first time this season, Spurs started slowly and were ultimately punished for it. Antonio Conte’s side have continually hit the ground trudging this term, conceding the first goal in 12 of their 19 matches to date.
They have been particularly poor in that regard of late. In Tottenham’s last nine Premier League games, stretching back long before World Cup 2022, their opponents have taken the lead on eight occasions. That is a remarkable statistic for a team hoping to qualify for the top four this season.
The loss to Arsenal was especially dispiriting for Tottenham fans, and not just because of local bragging rights. Spurs won the same fixture last season to in effect leapfrog their rivals in the race to qualify for the Champions League.
Yet despite spending more money than Arsenal last summer, it is the Gunners that have made progress and Tottenham who have stagnated. Questions are now being asked of Conte, whose long-term commitment to the club has always been in doubt.
Spurs can still salvage something from this season. They are in the knockout phase of the Champions League, the fourth round of the FA Cup, and sit just five points behind the top four ahead of this trip to Manchester.
At the same time, it is fair to say the first half of their campaign has not gone to plan.
The Etihad Stadium meeting between these two teams last season was hugely entertaining. Spurs delivered one of their best displays under Conte to win 3-2, with Harry Kane turning in a fantastic performance against the team that had tried to sign him a few months earlier.
Games between Manchester City and Tottenham at the former’s ground tend to be thrilling. In the last 12 such meetings in all competitions, the two teams have traded 51 goals at an average of almost 4.5 per game.
Another reason why we should expect this match to be watchable is the fact that both teams need to bounce back from significant losses at the weekend.
What is more, Tottenham’s counter-attacking style could actually bring more success away to Manchester City than at home to a bottom-half team they are expected to beat.
With all that in mind, back a City victory and over 2.5 goals on Thursday - and make sure you tune in if you can.
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Teams: Manchester City vs Tottenham Hotspur
Location: Etihad Stadium, Manchester, England
Date and Time: Thursday 19 January 2023, 3:00 PM EST
How to Watch: Peacock Premium
Greg Lea is a freelance soccer journalist from London. He is the former editor of The Set Pieces, and has contributed to the Guardian, FourFourTwo, and ESPN. A Crystal Palace fan, he is a long-time subscriber to the belief that it's the taking part that counts. Email: [email protected]More info on Greg Lea
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