The Premier League couldn’t have dreamt for a better game to follow what has been an unusually entertaining international break, as Tottenham make the trip north to face Manchester City.
Neither side are close enough to their intended targets as they would perhaps like and will look to correct that in Saturday’s early kick-off. However, it’s the defending champions who are best placed to do so as both Ladbrokes’ odds and the news team’s mix and match XI indicates.
Hugo Lloris is the sole Spur among the back five, with his acrobatic form so far this season giving him the edge on Joe Hart.
Across the defence two of the selections, Pablo Zabaleta at right-back and Vincent Kompany in the middle, are self explanatory.
Tougher decisions come over the Belgian skipper’s partner and on the left defensive flank, but all candidates reside at the Etihad.
As it is Martin Demichelis trumps Eliaquim Mangala’s inconsistent start, as does Aleksandar Kolarov’s attacking prowess over Gael Clichy.
Our midfield tandem partners Yaya Toure, whose off-colour start to the campaign still betters most of the Lilywhite contingent, with Etienne Capoue; the Frenchman’s impressive screening prevailing over the variously named Fernandos at City.
Behind Sergio Aguero – arguably the best striker in the league let alone these two teams – James Milner operates on the right wing having performed with gusto in that role thus far.
Nacer Chadli, the second-leading scorer of the sides, gets the left-flank berth, while David Silva’s unassuming genius in the number 10 role pips the challenge of Erik Lamela and Christian Eriksen, primarily because Spurs don’t know which of the two is a better fit there.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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