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Tottenham Hotspur vs Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Tottenham Hotspur Stadium Referee : Anthony Taylor
15th August 2021 4:30 PM (BST)
  • 1 Tottenham Hotspur

    • ‘55' Son Heung-Min
  • 0 Manchester City


Commentary By David Clayton


OK folks, enough from me. Stay tuned for Pep reaction and match highlight this evening. Thanks for tuning in and see next weekend where we'll hopefully have a happier outcome.


Sterling reaction...

"It's a difficult one to take, but it's a long season.  I thought we could have controlled the game a bit better, we let them counter a lot more, and they did the most important thing in football - put the ball in the net - we couldn’t. It's as simple as that 

"We just didn't take our chances. We wanted to start with a win, but there is a long road ahead."


It's a fact that one side who played today has enjoyed a full pre-season with almost a full squad while one has had a couple of weeks at best. It showed at times, particularly in the second-half, but we will only get stronger as the weeks go by. 


Ugh... after all these years when we lose a game like that I just want to go to bed, go to sleep and forget about it. We'll recover and hopefully, we can kickstart our season next weekend against Norwich but that disappointment never leaves you, does it?


More from Onuoha...

"The players would admit it wasn’t their best performance, they will react, they have won things from poor positions before. They will be looking forward to coming back."


Lescott & Onuoha reaction

Lescott: "Spurs away isn't an easy game, it’s never nice to lose, but it’s not the end of the world."

Onuoha: "We should remain positive. De Bruyne was out there, Zinchenko as well and when everyone is fit we will be back flying again."


This was a test that came too soon for us I'm afraid - had one of those early chances gone in it might have been a different outcome. We can make excuses but we have to get on with it. We don't often lose the first game, but we have and now we move on to the next match.


10 minutes for KDB to have an impact - Spurs have been physical and committed but there is still time to get something out of this. Though it is running out...


Rob Pollard at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

 City need to get back into this quickly. Tottenham have taken control and are dominant right now. Let's see if KDB - so often our talisman - can alter the flow of this one.


On the plus side, we've 30 minutes plus to get back into this but we'll have to do something we've never done if we are to save this game - score at this stadium. We need to up the pace and maybe introduce one or two fresh faces


Uphill for City now...

We've been getting caught on the counter time and time again and Son cuts in from the right and drills a low shot home. He always scores against us....


City on the back foot slightly here - the pattern from the end of the first 45 is continuing with the Blues giving away possession a tad too easily and Spurs looking threatening. 


Superb Ruben Dias. Ferna gets caught by Dele Alli and eventually a ball comes in from Pierre-Emile Højbjerg  but Dias sniffed the danger and fashions a clearance to keep the score level. 


Nedum Onuoha on Sterling first 45

"He’s so so good. He’s incredible. Seeing Raheem have that desire to get straight back in is great to see. He plays well when it matters and does his part for the team."


Rob Pollard at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Decent half of football. We played some good stuff but we lacked ruthlessness in front of goal. Plenty of positives to build on in the second half, which is set up beautifully.


Half-time: Spurs 0-0 City

A half of two halves, first City's then Tottenham's. We should have scored at least one goal in that opening spell when we were breath-taking at times. Negative note - that's now 315 minutes without a goal at this ground.... has to end some time, right?


Son volleys over from 20 yards as the half edges towards a close. City started at a blistering pace, but Spurs have finished strongly. Let's get to the break and maybe tweak one or two things



City get caught on the counter and Son ends up curling a shot inches wide via Joao Cancelo's backside - good job as well as it might have crept in



Gundogan bursts forward and feeds Sterling whose cross falls nicely to Mahrez who looks certain to score but he gets in a tangle and shoots wide - on target and that was a certain goal


Another unpunished foul...

Davinson Sanchez continues to nip at Jack Grealish before inevitably bringing him down - Pep has a word with Sanchez and they end up embracing. Thinking Pep wasn't commending the Colombian on his tackling


Robert Pollard at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Spurs having a decent spell. Gundogan cleared off the line to deny Moura moments ago and they had created a few decent chances prior to that, too. The crowd are reacting – the atmosphere is electric in here.

City need to respond. We were controlling things early doors and looked really good in flashes, but we’ve ceded control a little. 

Grealish looks quality. The way he drops a shoulder and goes past players is wonderful to watch. Not been this excited about a new signing for quite some time.



A free-kick causes Ederson problems as it falls to Lucas Moura, but Gundogan is on hand to block it almost on the line and Dias was behind him! Home side more threatening in the last 10


Spurs fans up the volume as they win another corner - it's aimed at the near post by Son but Dias does fantastic to get a head to it and save a great scoring chance for the hosts


Tangaga has gone in heavily on Sterling twice and Grealish on another occasion - I'd have expected a yellow by now but nothing so far. One of the new rules this season it seems is to allow more physicality


Taxi for Dele

Sterling cuts in from the left and Skipp puts it out for a corner which eventually goes across the box and out to Mahrez on the right - he sells Dele Alli an outrageous dummy that leaves the Spurs man on his backside but the danger is cleared...


Rob Pollard at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

"Fast start to this game. The way Grealish drifted past two to win that free-kick was exciting – what a player he’s going to be for us. Fernandinho probably should have done better with his header and Cancelo has also had a chance. 

"This is being played at serious pace."


Nearly ready to go - impossible to say how this will pan out but I'd say it's important we take something back to Manchester with us and a draw would not be a bad result here. We have an incredibly tough start to this season, so here's hoping it starts well!


Rob Pollard at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

"The players have finished their warm-up and have headed back to the changing room to finalise their preparation. The sprinklers are on and the pitch is getting a good old drenching. Should be a fast-paced game. 

"Less than 10 minutes to go and excitement levels are rising inside the stadium."


Odd coincidence?

Nuno Espirito Santo starts the season at home to City... again. Last season the new Spurs boss was in charge of the Wolves side City beat 3-1 at Molineux to kick-off the 2020/21 campaign. More of the same please, Blues...


Pep on Grealish debut:

"Jack is not going to solve all our problems so we want to involve him in how we play. The quality he has can help us. He has to be himself. He did not come for one/two games, he is here for a few years." 


More from Rob Pollard in North London...

The big news for City, of course, is Jack Grealish starts. All eyes will be on him today. He’s an entertainer, a player who always wants to beat a man and create space. He relishes the spotlight and I can’t wait to see how he adapts to this City side. 

The conditions are fantastic here in London - warm sunshine and a beautiful pitch. It couldn’t be better, really. 

It’s the first game today for new Spurs boss Nuno Espirito Santo. He got a fantastic reception when he came out for his pre-match media duties earlier. He will want a positive start to his time in charge. 

It’s all set up to be a great occasion.


Lescott on Kane absence...

"He’s a proven goal-scorer, exceptional striker,. Spurs are unbeaten in pre-season, they beat us in the Champions League without him, but they are worse without him because he is a top player - but it's still a good Tottenham team ."


My colleague Rob Pollard is in place at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium...

Here we go. A new season - plenty of hope and expectation. A long campaign lies in wait but it’s great to be back. 

This is my first time at the new Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and it’s a magnificent arena. Having fans in here today will be special after such a difficult time for everyone across the world. It feels like something close to normality is finally returning. 

It’s an attacking line-up for City, as always. Guardiola often talks about Raheem Sterling’s physical condition and the speed he recovers from matches. That’s the reason he starts today, despite a hectic summer that saw him lead England to their first major final since 1966. It’ll be fascinating to see how he plays after such a fantastic European Championships. 

Ruben Dias, a leader at the back, also starts. He returned to pre-season in fine condition and has looked excellent in the lead up to today. Can he be as consistent as he was last season? If he does, it will once again give City a great platform on which we can build. 

Very excited for this one.


Ferna: We are more than ready...

"The players got their deserved time off, they came back a bit late but still time to get ready to start the season early, some came back early. I think we are more than ready to start. 

"I hope we can be ready and put a good performance on the pitch - hopefully we can get the three points."


Pre-match Pep...

"Raheem has special physical quality, his recovery and muscular recovery is exceptional. Everyone else needs more time. The selection was thinking about people who have been here since the beginning. 

"Four days ago was the first time we were all together. Aymeric arrived good too. They arrived good, there are 38 games and they know everyone is going to be involved. Hopefully we can do a good game!"


Lescott pre-match thoughts on Matchday Live...

"Excitement when I see the names, going to be hard to predict where they are playing with so much talent. It’s a surprise to see Raheem [Sterling] there starting. But as Pep said he does recover quicker than others."


Great chance for Benjamin Mendy and Nathan Ake to stake a claim this afternoon. Both impressed against Leicester City last weekend and will look to go again today. 


So Jack Grealish starts and looks set to be the pivotal attacking midfielder. Raheem Sterling is the only England returnee that gets in the team, with Kevin De Bruyne on the bench...


Great game going at St James' Park where it is 2-2 between Newcastle an West Ham. Still looks strange to see a full stadium and can't wait to next week's home game against Norwich...


Almost 11 years ago to the day, City opened the 2010/11 campaign against Tottenham at White Hart Lane. We left - somehow - with 0-0 draw. Joe Hart's display that day remains one of the best goalkeeping performances I've ever witnessed.


Lawro predicts...

Anyone who enjoys Mark Lawrenson's weekly predictions on BBC Sport will be happy with his verdict on today's game...

"This is a new start for Spurs under Nuno Espirito Santo, and they have a couple of new players too, but I don't see them stopping City from taking the three points."

Lawro's prediction: 0-2

Fingers crossed, Lawro.


Edin on the move

Inter Milan confirmed our former favourite Edin Dzeko has joined Inter yesterday. He scored on his debut (a friendly), of course. Good luck Edin!  


We'll have Matchday Live coming up for you an hour before kick-off, with two of football's nicest guys Joleon Lescott and Nedum Onuoha our guests this afternoon.


There's a couple of hours until we kick-off but we'll have the opening day starting XI for you at 3.30pm. It will be interesting to see who starts given our staggered return of players for pre-season, so we await with interest...


Welcome... the Premier League is back!

We've waited almost 18 months for a Premier League game played in front of a full house, but finally, 'normal' football is back. Hallelujah!


Spurs v City

Good morning!

Welcome to the Matchday Centre for Manchester City's Premier League game against Tottenham Hotspur.

Pep Guardiola's side begin the defence of our Premier League title at 16:30 (UK) on Sunday 15 August and you can join us right here for live updates throughout.

Our coverage will begin two hours before kick-off at 14:30, with our Matchday Live show getting under way at 15:30.

This week's guests are Joleon Lescott and Nedum Onuoha and you tune in here for City-centric pre-match build-up.

See you later!

Other games that day

  • Newcastle United2
    West Ham United4
  • Brighton and Hove Albion0
  • Crystal Palace0
  • Leeds United0
  • Aston Villa0
    Newcastle United0
  • Liverpool0

As it stood

P GD Pts
1 Manchester United 1 +4 3
2 Chelsea 1 +3 3
3 Liverpool 1 +3 3
4 West Ham United 1 +2 3
5 Everton 1 +2 3
6 Brentford 1 +2 3
7 Watford 1 +1 3
8 Brighton and Hove Albion 1 +1 3
9 Leicester City 1 +1 3
10 Tottenham Hotspur 1 +1 3
11 Aston Villa 1 -1 0
12 Burnley 1 -1 0
14 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1 -1 0
15 Newcastle United 1 -2 0
16 Southampton 1 -2 0
17 Arsenal 1 -2 0
18 Crystal Palace 1 -3 0
19 Norwich City 1 -3 0
20 Leeds United 1 -4 0
Link To Full Table