Tottenham v Manchester City: Premier League – live

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Premier League: So it’s come to this. Tottenham Hotspur host Manchester City tonight in a match morally conflicted Arsenal fans everywhere really need and want them to win or draw, in order to boost their own beloved club’s chances of winning a first Premier League title in 20 years. There’ll be plenty of Tottenham fans feeling a little dirty inside too, knowing that a win is also essential to keep their faint hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League alive but could also go a long way towards helping their bitter north London rivals win the league.

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Anything less than a Spurs victory will rule them out of a place at European football’s top table next season and despite Ange Postecoglou’s claims to the contrary, there are almost certainly plenty of season ticket-holders at White Hart Lane who’d happily take that particular hit for the reward of seeing Arsenal’s title hopes take a hammer-blow.

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We’ll find out in due course whether or not their players are up for it, although Jamie Redknapp insists they’ll be naturally motivated to do their best because they have something to play for and besides, it’s not in an elite athlete’s nature to slack off. Whether or not their best will be good enough against the reigning champions remains to be seen, so stay tuned for what could be a highly eventful and intriguing contest. Kick-off in north London is at 8pm (BST) but we’ll have plenty of team news and build-up in the meantime.

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Key events

Fun fact: It’s a remarkable and well known one but there might be some readers out there who are unaware that Manchester City have never scored a goal or taken a single point in any of their four Premier League visits to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.

It hasn’t been for the want of trying, as they’ve peppered the Spurs goal with 74 shots in their four top flight defeats at the ground since it opened, and also missed a penalty when losing 1-0 there in the Champions League in April 2019.

They finally managed to break the hoodoo in January, when Nathan Ake left it late to break their stadium duck in a 1-0 FA Cup win with a contentious goal that left Tottenham’s players and supporters spitting feathers. They felt Ake’s winner should have been ruled out for what some – but not the only people whose opinion mattered – perceived to be a foul on their goalkeeper, Guglielmo Vicario, in the build-up.

Tottenham Hotspur: Ange Postecoglou has said he does not understand why some Tottenham supporters would prefer to lose against Manchester City on Tuesday if it means Arsenal do not win their first title for 20 years. Really? Words: Ed Aarons.

Manchester City: Pep Guardiola has admitted he and his players will feel “squeaky bum time” before their pivotal visit to Tottenham on Tuesday as they seek to win a record fourth consecutive title. Jamie Jackson reports …

Talksport: We all know that sports radio phone-ins are an entirely accurate barometer of public opinion, so it was interesting to hear Andy Goldstein and Jamie O’Hara take calls from Tottenham fans on their Drive show this afternoon. Going on what I heard, there is a fairly even split of supporters who want their team to win tonight and those who are desperate for them to get beaten.

Squires: Our cartoonist never fails to deliver, so come for the sight of an ashamed Gunnersaurus attempting to scrub “the Spurs” off himself in the shower and stay for the gag about Noel Gallagher refusing to do the Poznam with his fellow Manchester City fans at Fulham.

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Updated at 18.40 BST

How things stand

We all know, but it would be a gross dereliction of journalistic duty not to remind everyone. A City win will see them leapfrog Arsenal and go two points clear at the Premier League summit, leaving them in the title race box-seat going into the final round of games on Sunday.

A Spurs win or draw will leave Arsenal in pole position ahead of their final game of the campaign at h0me against Everton, because they have a slightly superior goal difference (+3) to City, who host West Ham on the final day oof the season. Following Aston Villa’s late comeback against Liverpool last night, anything less than a win tonight will end Tottenham’s already slim hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League.

A point will be enough to guarantee Ange Postecoglou’s side fifth place and a spot in the Europa League, but defeat will leave them vulnerable to the possibility of being overtaken by one or both of Newcastle United and Chelsea, who are both six points behind Spurs and have two games each left to play. Newcastle have a vastly superior goal difference to Spurs, while Chelsea’s is currently identical.

A seventh place finish in the table might not be enough to qualify for European football next season, for reasons that are almost entirely dependent on how Manchester United get on in their two remaining league matches and the FA Cup final. Most available recent evidence suggests they will get on very badly.

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Updated at 18.39 BST

Early team news: Having limped out of Manchester City’s win over Fulham in the first half with an ankle injury, Nathan Ake is Manchester City’s injury concern and was due to undergo a fitness test today. His inclusion in the City line-up seems unlikely and it was Kyle Walker who replaced him on Saturday, filling in at right-back so Manuel Akanji could move into the heart of the defence, where he had an untroubled evening.

Tottenham have a comparatively lengthy list of lame and halt and will be without Richarlison, Yves Bissouma, Ben Davies, Manor Solomon, Timo Werner and Destiny Odogie tonight. Ryan Sessegnon, who has made just one seven-minute appearance for the club this season, remains sidelined with a long-term hamstring issue.

Nathan Ake is surrounded by concerned teammates after going down with an ankle injury at Craven Cottage on Saturday evening. Photograph: Stephanie Meek/CameraSport/Getty Images

Tottenham Hotspur v Manchester City

Premier League: So it’s come to this. Tottenham Hotspur host Manchester City tonight in a match morally conflicted Arsenal fans everywhere really need and want them to win or draw, in order to boost their own beloved club’s chances of winning a first Premier League title in 20 years. There’ll be plenty of Tottenham fans feeling a little dirty inside too, knowing that a win is also essential to keep their faint hopes of qualifying for next season’s Champions League alive but could also go a long way towards helping their bitter north London rivals win the league.

Anything less than a Spurs victory will rule them out of a place at European football’s top table next season and despite Ange Postecoglou’s claims to the contrary, there are almost certainly plenty of season ticket-holders at White Hart Lane who’d happily take that particular hit for the reward of seeing Arsenal’s title hopes take a hammer-blow.

We’ll find out in due course whether or not their players are up for it, although Jamie Redknapp insists they’ll be naturally motivated to do their best because they have something to play for and besides, it’s not in an elite athlete’s nature to slack off. Whether or not their best will be good enough against the reigning champions remains to be seen, so stay tuned for what could be a highly eventful and intriguing contest. Kick-off in north London is at 8pm (BST) but we’ll have plenty of team news and build-up in the meantime.

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Updated at 18.31 BST

The Guardian

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