Two of the Premier League’s most successful modern managers do battle on Saturday as Tottenham Hotspur entertain Manchester City.
Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola have engaged in a healthy rivalry over the years, stemming from a time where both men were on the touchline in El Clasico derbies between Real Madrid and Barcelona.
Between them they boast 5 Premier League titles, although it is Manchester City boss Guardiola who has won the league more recently, with his last top flight crown coming in 2019.
Guardiola has also put an end to any speculation regarding his future at the Etihad by this week penning a new Man City deal taking him to the summer of 2023, which would make it seven years in Manchester.
Contrastingly, Jose Mourinho marks his one-year anniversary as Tottenham manager this weekend.
The Portuguese, who took over from sacked Mauricio Pochettino, is still yet to taste glory with Spurs. But in what has been an unusual season so far, no doubt the special one will be motivated to achieve big things with this Tottenham side – a win over Manchester City will heighten the belief.
Both sides have had some incredible clashes in recent seasons, both domestically and in the Champions League – but with this game taking place in North London, it could be argued that Spurs hold the advantage – they are unbeaten against City in both games at their new stadium to date.
In fact, only Chelsea have beaten Manchester City more times in the Premier League era than Tottenham have.
If the stats make for miserable reading, the injury list isn’t much better for Man City fans. Raheem Sterling and Nathan Ake both sustained knocks whilst on international duty, with defender Ake less likely to feature than England man Sterling against Spurs.
One positive for City is the potential return of striker Sergio Aguero. Guardiola has been deploying Ferran Torres upfront in the Argentine’s absence, a decision which has bore fruit – Torres bagged a hattrick for Spain against Germany in the Nations League midweek.
Gabriel Jesus is also expected to be back up to fitness and may well feature, although the Tottenham game will come too soon for Ben Mendy and Fernandinho.
There is confusion over the availability of Oleksandr Zinchenko, who was part of the Ukraine squad forced to quarantine in Switzerland due to coronavirus cases.
Tottenham’s Matt Doherty won’t play a part in the game due to a positive Covid test of his own, but Mourinho is hoping Steven Bergwijn may be fit enough to feature after withdrawing from the Dutch camp due to injury.
Erik Lamela misses out for Spurs with a foot injury, but Tanguy Ndombele is available after recovering from a similar problem.
Tottenham v Manchester City is a 5.30pm kick off on Saturday 21st November.