Wounded animals Man City will prey on weak Spurs

Manchester City suffered a controversial and damaging derby defeat at the hands of Manchester United at Old Trafford last time out, and must quickly regain their form if they're to have any hopes of retaining their Premier League crown. They welcome Tottenham Hotspur to the Etihad on Thursday evening. The visitors looked abject in their own loss against their biggest rivals at the weekend, and a trip to Eastlands isn't likely to be a springboard to any sort of recovery. Read our preview here:

Akan do it

Pep Guardiola will have everyone in his senior squad available on Thursday with the possible sole exception of Kevin De Bruyne. The Belgian playmaker didn't train on Monday, but with results and performances seemingly slipping at present, he might be risked for at least some of the game. Rico Lewis and Jack Grealish could be restored to the starting lineup. The first murmurings of discontent are being heard about the tactical approach with Erling Haaland at the forefront despite his monstrous amount of goals. The hosts have barely had a shot on target for two matches, and that simply must change against a side that will seek to soak up the pressure. Manuel Akanji will be tasked with keeping Harry Kane quiet. The Swiss centre back hasn't had the best of times recently, but will go some way to cementing his place in the side by preventing the England striker from netting.

Matt's your lot

Antonio Conte's troops only got going in the second half of their defeat to Arsenal when they were already two goals down. A similar performance on Thursday could risk their opponents being out of sight and the knives being out for the head coach, who remains dogged in both his strategy and the pursuit of a right wing-back more suited to his style. Emerson Royal and current occupant Matt Doherty have traded places numerous times since his appointment down the flank, but he seems unhappy with either of them, let alone Djed Spence, who has been left out in the cold. Doherty will provide all the width down his wing, but will need support from the midfield pairing of Rodrigo Bentancur and Pierre-Emile Højbjerg to get into positions to hurt the home side.

Betting tip

Conte's days look numbered in north London, though he hasn't been helped by a baffling and disappointing recruitment drive since joining. Both teams will be near full strength on paper, but Man City look far stronger in spite of their own issues. Casumo have odds of 8.50 for a 3-0 win for them to help restore some confidence.

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