It’s a battle of first vs worst on Aug. 28th as Tottenham Hotspur welcomes league-leaders Manchester City at White Hart Lane in an English Premier League matchup.
After breaking the bank for the last few years, Manchester City is finally starting to show a little progress in the league. However, it’s been an expensive way to improve the club. To put it mildly, they’re just trying to buy a winning side instead of developing one. To many true soccer fans, this is a detriment to the sport.
Anyway, they’ve gotten off to a decent start this season so far. After blowing the Community Shield against Manchester United 3-2, they opened the season with a 4-0 home win over newly-promoted Swansea and then beat Bolton 3-2 with a mediocre effort. They’ve scored seven goals in two games and it looks like newcomer Sergio Aguero might be a good signing while Edin Dzeko is finally starting to earn his paycheque. David Silva is also playing well, but Carlos Tevez, if they keep him, looks like he’s going to be a bust this year.
Also, City hasn’t spent enough of its owner’s money yet and went out and bought Samir Nasri from Arsenal this week. While Nasri’s a fine player, he’s not really needed and it just means another multi-millionaire is going to have to sit on the bench and collect a few hundred thousand a week for doing nothing. City will have midfielder Nigel de Jong back after he missed the Bolton match due to injury.
Tottenham is sitting in last place in the EPL, but they’ve just played one game. Their season opener against Everton was postponed due to rioting in England. They opened the season last Monday and were embarrassed 3-0 at Old Trafford by Manchester United, leaving them in the basement. Spurs also played on Aug. 25th and only managed a 0-0 draw against Hearts of Scotland, but they had a 5-0 win in the first leg of that Europa Cup tie.
Interestingly, manager Harry Redknapp signed striker Emmanuel Adebayor from City on a season-long loan, but it’s doubtful he’ll be playing against his parent club in this game. This move by Redknapp doesn’t make a lot of sense either. He already has Jermain Defoe, Roman Pavlyuchenko, Rafael Van der vaart, Peter Crouch, and Giovani Dos Santos on the books and recently got rid of Ireland’s all-time top scorer in Robbie Keane. Adebayor is no better than any of these players and it is just another case of more quality finishers sitting on the bench or in the stands.
Spurs also had to deal with the whining and crying of midfielder Luka Modric, who recently signed a five-year deal with the club, but now wants to head to Chelsea for more money. Sending him to the reserves, benching or fining him is the proper way to deal with him, but as usual the player will get what he wants by either being transferred or given a pay raise. The baby might play against City in this game.
Spurs will be without Wilson Palacios, Ledley King (what else is new), and Steven Pienaar as they’re all injured. They’ve improved in net with 40-year-old American Brad Friedel joining during the summer from Aston Villa and City has only scored one goal against them in their last three meetings.
This could be a game with a few goals in it and don‘t be surprised if Spurs manage to win it, perhaps by 3-2.
Bookmaker William Hill has the odds of a Man City win listed at 6/4 with a Spurs win at 19/10 and a draw at 21/10.