Manchester City show champions’ resilience in comeback vs Tottenham

Erling Haaland of Manchester City (Photo by James Gill - Danehouse/Getty Images)
Erling Haaland of Manchester City (Photo by James Gill - Danehouse/Getty Images) /

Manchester City showed a big strength with comeback against Tottenham to dream again about the Premier League title…

The Premier League reserved this week for a derby between Manchester City and Tottenham, two teams who needed to signal a positive response to the fans after recent failures and below-average performances.

Manager Pep Guardiola made five changes from the Manchester United defeat. Stones and Lewis returned to the back four in place of Walker and Cancelo. De Bruyne and Silva started on the bench, with Guardiola opting for Gundogan and Grealish in midfield.

At the other end, Spurs made four changes after the defeat to Arsenal. Davies came into the back three in place of Lenglet, while Emerson and Perisic came on in place of Doherty and Sessegnon. Finally, Bentancur returned from injury in midfield in place of Sarr.

Tottenham resist in the first half and apply a heavy blow before halftime

The match script lived up to expectations with both teams leaving little space for their opponents with defensive discipline in the first 15 minutes.

However, the Citzens’ greater offensive disposition started a string of good chances in the sequence of the first half, mainly with striker Erling Haaland.

Lloris was also outstanding when called upon, saving Lewis’s shot and, above all, Ake’s shot from a tight angle, securing the clean sheet before the break.

Manchester City failed to capitalise on their chances, and Tottenham took advantage of defensive lapses to score twice.

In the first of these, Ederson again failed badly after Rodri’s pass and Kulusevski took advantage to finish. Next, Harry Kane set up the counter-attack and left the ball for Rodri to shoot firmly with little angle and double the lead on the scoreboard.

Manchester City’s “resurgence” with a lot of intensity and dominate Spurs

Manchester City’s second half came to a close, with some booing as the half-time whistle sounded, and the (un)crowded Eithad Stadium was already in a tense state due to the situation of the match. However, manager Pep Guardiola solved the team’s problems in the changing rooms.

Keeping control of possession again, the Citzens returned with greater intensity and needed just six minutes to reduce the score through Julian Alvares after Perisic lost the race for the ball against Mahrez.

The second goal came two minutes later when leading scorer Erling Haaland broke his three-game scoring drought with a firm header from Rodri’s through ball.

Finally, on 63 minutes, Mahrez completed the comeback in sensational fashion in yet another battle lost by Perisic, with Mahrez charging down the right flank to again beat goalkeeper Lloris.

Parallels between Citzens and Spurs after derby

Manchester City showed attacking superiority against Tottenham throughout the match in terms of performance, but two things caught the eye in the second half.

Firstly, the Citzens managed to turn the scoreline on its head with impressive speed in 20 minutes, reminiscent of the best moments of the Pep Guardiola era in Manchester.

Moreover, it also drew attention to the wide dominance established against Tottenham during the second half, before and after the turnaround, with Spurs only having one real chance to score from Kulusevski’s try.

The championship resilience shown by Manchester City is a contrast to Tottenham’s passivity in failing to respond to the turnaround they suffered on the scoreboard.