Son Heung-min squanders golden chance as City’s victory at Spurs shatters Arsenal hearts

Tottenham Hotspur's Son Heung-min shakes hands with Manchester City manager Pep Guardiola after the match

For a team so accustomed to winning games, the uncertainty of this evening must have felt very unfamiliar for Manchester City and never more so than when Son Heung-min ran through on goal on 86 minutes, and Pep Guardiola was struck by the need to lie down.

The manager of the era was on his back, seized with anxiety, when substitute goalkeeper Stefan Ortega arranged himself in such a way to block the shot and Guardiola could pick himself off the ground. Later he would say in that moment he recalled all the Son and Harry Kane goals that had gone in against his City team over the years. “Oh my god, I thought, ‘Not again’,” Guardiola said, although not this time, against this team.

Pep Guardiola on his backPep Guardiola on his back

Guardiola was overcome with anxiety as Son looked to be certain to score

Ortega had come on for Ederson earlier in that second half and was propelled towards a moment of destiny that was just as crucial to City as the two goals from Erling Haaland either side of that save. Ortega will play the FA Cup final, as is the arrangement, but when City go for their 28th and final win of the season against West Ham at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday it will likely be Ederson back in goal.

Such is the way that the City machine works – for even the most important parts they have a spare. Only David Moyes now, in his West Ham farewell, stands between City and the longest consecutive dynasty English football has known. It would be one of the most extraordinary collapses in the game’s recent history for a team that have not lost a game of any stripe, other than a penalty shoot-out, since Dec 6.

The champions of England, on the brink of a record fourth straight Premier League, looked a lot less formidable between Haaland’s 26th and 27th league goals of the season than history will record. Then, when the City No 9 dispatched the second from the penalty spot and the spell of invincibility was rekindled.

As for Tottenham this was an evening that began with Champions League qualification still within their grasp and a home crowd who in their hearts wanted that prize less than they wanted to keep the Premier League trophy out of the hands of Arsenal. The relief when Haaland’s first went in was clear in both sets of fans. Together in injury-time, they both sang the same song about Arsenal. This was the result, which leaves City one win from the title, the home fans wanted.

Yet it was still not clear what prompted Ange Postecoglou’s post-match strop – an odd postscript to an evening when the enmity of North London mattered more to the Spurs fans. The Spurs manager, at the end of his first season, complained about an unspecified failing that he had identified at the club “in the last 48 hours”. What exactly it was he would not say, and then seemed upset to be asked further about it.

Spurs will not play in the Champions League next season. They will also know they will rarely face a City side as nervous as this one. Guardiola’s side did not hit their usual standards, and not until the substitute Jeremy Doku won that late penalty was it certain they would win. He had come on as a replacement for Kevin De Bruyne, felled by a stud to the back of the ankle from Pape Sarr.

That was not even the most dramatic of the two second half injuries for City, the first of which was the blow to the head of Ederson which necessitated Ortega’s arrival. Guardiola said later that he had no option but to replace Ederson when the doctor told him that swelling to the Brazilian’s eye after a collision with Cristian Romero meant that he could not see properly. Not that Ederson took it well.

He shook off Guardiola attempts at consolation when he trudged off later. Ederson was furious. Having thrown down his gloves and refused Guardiola’s hand he pulled his shirt over his head on the bench and looked inconsolable. Even Guardiola seemed puzzled by what might have happened.

There had been some agony for the City manager as the game unfolded and he recognised that his team were simply off their game. Spurs, beaten in four of their last five games, were not a side who looked entirely capable of taking advantage but they kept City out long enough. Postecoglou played with no central striker. Instead Brennan Johnson and Son played in wide advanced positions. As an improvised left-back it was a struggle at times for Micky Van de Ven.

Something had to give and in the end it was, inevitably, Spurs, but there was some drama. The first substitute player who departed in a rage was Rodrigo Bentancur. He may have to pay for the expensive heated bench seat that he kicked repeatedly on 55 minutes. Having been booked for the first half foul on Phil Foden he was walking a fine line after that and his subsequent reticence meant that he was partly responsible for the goal.

Foden had dared Bentancur to challenge him and pushed past Romero on the left. His ball across was channelled from Bernardo Silva into De Bruyne’s run in behind. His cross was unmissable for Haaland. A few minutes later Haaland would waft a heel at a cross that dropped behind him and Guardiola would explode in rage at the bench, demonstrating to his striker that he expected him to take decisive touches. De Bruyne would go off injured.

City were leading but by no means comfortable. As for the Spurs support, this must have felt odd. They urged their team on with the instinctive emotions of a crowd but their relief when Haaland scored was palpable. When Ortega made a first save from another substitute, Dejan Kulusevski, soon after coming on, it was not clear what the reaction might be from the home support had it gone in. Ortega’s save from Son was even better.

After Haaland buried his penalty the Spurs fans resumed their mocking chant of Arsenal, and from the away end the City fans joined in.


City take massive step towards fourth straight title: as it happened


10:57 PM BST

‘We had a job to do’

Kyle Walker speaks to Sky Sports: “It was very difficult with the emotions riding on it but the lads did the job they needed to do. It is one step closer. You have to take every game as it comes. We had a job to do tonight but we know how things can swing.

“We prepare, we recover and West Ham is another final and hopefully we can go and make history for this great club. It is not job done by a million miles. Hopefully we can get the win. If I didn’t enjoy the pressure, I would be in the wrong job and the wrong team.

“Last night, I couldn’t sleep. They tried to set fireworks off but we weren’t there, they missed us. I can’t describe the feeling when we went 2-0 up.

“It was an unusual game but we are competitors. Spurs could have gone and got the Champions League. You could see they were putting everything on the line to win the game.”


10:53 PM BST

More from Guardiola

“Now calm, thinking [about Michail] Antonio, [Jarrod] Bowen, [James] Ward-Prowse.

“Kevin [De Bruyne] had a kick to the ankle and couldn’t run properly. Ederson did not have concussion, he had a problem with his eye. He could not see properly so the doctor said I should change. He [Stefan Ortega] is a world-class keeper. He’s an exceptional, exceptional keeper.

“We know what we’re playing for. The tension is there, the rival is so good. It’s why it is difficult, we know that. Everyone come to the stadium and make noise. These games are more difficult but you have to do it. We’ll have one day off, two days to prepare, and then we will do our best.”


10:47 PM BST

A dream becomes a nightmare…

…for Arsenal supporters the world over.

Tottenham Hotspur's Son Heung-min shoots at goalTottenham Hotspur's Son Heung-min shoots at goal

Tottenham Hotspur’s Son Heung-min shoots at goal


10:42 PM BST

‘A difficult game’

Guardiola speaks to BBC Sport: “It was so difficult a game. We knew it. They play with a lot of pride and intensity and it’s so difficult to play against them.

“Spurs will in the future be unbelievable if they stick with the manager. We gave the chance in our hands for the last game. The tennis players say ‘the serve to win Wimbledon’, the last game, is the most difficult one.

“It happened in our period against Aston Villa. And many many years ago it happened with Sergio Aguero [scoring] in 93 minutes 20 seconds against QPR. So there will be the typical game.”


10:38 PM BST

Ange on the warpath

Strange dynamic developing between Postecoglou and the Spurs fan base seemingly. The manager has been left seething presumably by the atmosphere inside the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium this evening. He was not specific in his press conference but it does not take a genius to put two and two together.

The oddities of the evening continue.


10:34 PM BST

Speaking to beINSPORTS now…

…Postecoglou on the atmoshere: “ Yeah it wasn’t the usual home atmosphere but we just had to deal with that.”

Tottenham Hotspur manager Ange PostecoglouTottenham Hotspur manager Ange Postecoglou

Tottenham Hotspur manager Ange Postecoglou


10:31 PM BST

More from Ange…

…and he is not happy: “The foundations are really fragile. The last 48 hours have shown me that. It’s inside the club, outside the club.

“I don’t care [about the chants]. I just want to build a winning team. I want to win.”


10:28 PM BST

A footnote on the evening

Kevin De Bruyne is now second on the all-time Premier League assist rankings after his 112th assist. He now sits ahead of Cesc Fabregas, with Ryan Giggs leading the way on 162.

Kevin De Bruyne, Rodri, Bernardo Silva of Manchester City celebrate after the goal scored by Erling Haaland during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandKevin De Bruyne, Rodri, Bernardo Silva of Manchester City celebrate after the goal scored by Erling Haaland during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Kevin De Bruyne, Rodri, Bernardo Silva of Manchester City celebrate after the goal scored by Erling Haaland during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


10:24 PM BST

More from Postecoglou

On a whether was a chance missed?: “Yes of course. We lost the game so it was a missed chance for three points. We had the opportunities and we had to punish them.”

On missing Champions League: “We lost the game so I am disappointed. [Any pride to take?] Not right now because we have lost. We will assess the season, still one more game to go, one more game against Sheffield United and we need to make sure we win.

“I think wherever you finish is a fair reflection of where you are at.”


10:23 PM BST

‘We weren’t able to capitalise’

Ange Postecoglou speaks to Sky: “It was a tight game and in the big moments we weren’t able to capitalise and they were.

“I thought we were in the game the whole time, even at 1-0 we had a great chance to go level. In the second half we were chasing the game so they got a little more space but I thought we were well in it up until the second goal.”


10:21 PM BST

A telling stat


10:18 PM BST

Meanwhile…

…at Aston Villa’s end-of-season awards ceremony after their place in the Champions League was confirmed.


10:16 PM BST

It’s the Pozan for City’s fans…

Manchester City fans do the Poznan in celebration during the Premier League match between Fulham FC and Manchester City at Craven Cottage on May 11, 2024 in London, EnglandManchester City fans do the Poznan in celebration during the Premier League match between Fulham FC and Manchester City at Craven Cottage on May 11, 2024 in London, England

Manchester City fans do the Poznan in celebration during the Premier League match between Fulham FC and Manchester City at Craven Cottage on May 11, 2024 in London, England

And for Spurs fans…

Spurs fans do the Poznan after Man City take the leadSpurs fans do the Poznan after Man City take the lead

Spurs fans do the Poznan after Man City take the lead


10:14 PM BST

‘Stefan Ortega saved us’

Rodri speaks to Sky Sports: “Today was incredible, the character. We know it wasn’t the best game but we must talk about the substitutions. Stefan Ortega was simply incredible and we have the best goalkeeper in the world.

“We know it’s not done yet. We need the people behind us.”


10:12 PM BST

Impressive from Kavanagh

Referee Chris Kavanagh will be pleased that his low-key approach in this top game. The challenge on the Manchester City goalkeeper Ederson is of course subjective. I am sure that had Kavanagh reached for his red card VAR would not have intervened. I was concerned about how he came to the decision to award a yellow after taking no initial action and appearing to receive advice from the VAR to show yellow. In these circumstances I would like the referee to view the monitor and view various angles before making that final call


10:10 PM BST

Sam Wallace’s player ratings…

…out of ten by the way for those uninitiated with this concept.

Tottenham (4-3-1-2): Vicario 6; Porro 6, Romero 6, Dragusin 6, Van de Ven 6; Sarr 5, Hojberg 6; Maddison 5; Johnson 6, Son 6.

Manchester City (4-2-1-2-1): Ederson 7; Walker 8, Dias 8, Akanji 6, Gvardiol 8; Rodri 7, Kovacic 7; Silva 6; De Bruyne 7, Foden 8; Haaland 8.


10:09 PM BST

City’s big-game pedigree

What a very bizarre game of football. In some ways City’s performance needs marking up even further as I’m not sure any of their players will have played a Premier League game amidst such a strange atmosphere. It clearly took them time to adjust, but adjust they did. This side continues to answer every question that the Premier League can throw at them.


10:05 PM BST

An arithmetic update

City now sit two points clear of Arsenal and will win the Premier League if they beat West Ham on Sunday. Arsenal need City to drop points and then beat Everton at home to better them.

The race for fourth is wrapped up. With that result, Aston Villa are confirmed to be in next season’s Champions League.


10:03 PM BST

Stefan Ortega take a bow…

Stefan Ortega of Manchester City reacts during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandStefan Ortega of Manchester City reacts during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Stefan Ortega of Manchester City reacts during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


10:02 PM BST

Bored?

Not sure this lot are bored…

Fans of Manchester City celebrate their team's second goal scored by Erling Haaland of Manchester City (not pictured) from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandFans of Manchester City celebrate their team's second goal scored by Erling Haaland of Manchester City (not pictured) from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Fans of Manchester City celebrate their team’s second goal scored by Erling Haaland of Manchester City (not pictured) from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Fans of Manchester City celebrate their team's second goal scored by Erling Haaland of Manchester City (not pictured) from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandFans of Manchester City celebrate their team's second goal scored by Erling Haaland of Manchester City (not pictured) from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Fans of Manchester City celebrate their team’s second goal scored by Erling Haaland of Manchester City (not pictured) from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


10:00 PM BST

And for Arsenal?

A night ends in ‘what might have been’. Son had the chance to give them control of the title race heading into the final day. He failed to convert and they must rue a chance gone. Only West Ham, who travel to City on Sunday, can save them now.


09:57 PM BST

FULL TIME: Tottenham 0 Man City 2

Substitute Ortega is named player of the match by Sky. His three second-half saves might well have won City the title.

They march on into the final day and they have their fourth title in a row sat right in front of them.


09:55 PM BST

90+8 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 2

Plenty of home fans still in the ground. Presumably to celebrate Arsenal’s demise.


09:53 PM BST

90+6 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 2

‘When the Spurs come marching in’ rings around the ground. Baffling. Muted all night before this. What a delightfully bizarre evening.


09:51 PM BST

90+4 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 2

Spurs to their credit keep pressing. Kulusevski has been excellent since coming on and drives diagonally across the box, forcing a corner.


09:49 PM BST

90+2 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 2

You have to credit Haaland there. That is a pressure penalty and it could not have been more convincing.

Erling Haaland of Manchester City celebrates scoring his team's second goal from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandErling Haaland of Manchester City celebrates scoring his team's second goal from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Erling Haaland of Manchester City celebrates scoring his team’s second goal from a penalty kick during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


09:48 PM BST

GOOOOAAAALLLLLL!

Haaland has ice in his veins. Brilliant penalty, sending Vicario the wrong way.

Manchester City's Erling Braut Haaland scores their second goal from the penalty spotManchester City's Erling Braut Haaland scores their second goal from the penalty spot

Manchester City’s Erling Braut Haaland scores their second goal from the penalty spot


09:46 PM BST

PENALTY TO CITY!

Doku wins it with quick feet and Perro clips his ankle. Clear penalty and Haaland has the ball in his hand. What a moment this is.


09:45 PM BST

88 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

There is going to be significant added time. This is not over by any shot.


09:44 PM BST

86 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

WOW WOW WOW! Son simply has to score. Akanji gives the ball away inside his own half, leaving Son one on one with Ortega. He must score, he has to score but the shot is straight at Ortega, who makes his third big save of the half.

Arsenal fans thought they had their moment there.

Steffan Ortega of Manchester City saves from Son Heung-min of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandSteffan Ortega of Manchester City saves from Son Heung-min of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Steffan Ortega of Manchester City saves from Son Heung-min of Tottenham Hotspur during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


09:41 PM BST

84 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Gvardiol has chances on all sides as he picks the ball up on the left side of the penalty area but gets caught in two minds and butchers a promising position.


09:39 PM BST

82 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

City have stopped playing. Rodri tries the sort of low percentage pass you never see him play and Spurs again get possession back. Tension, tension, tension.


09:37 PM BST

80 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

City are living dangerously here and it’s all coming through Kulusevski. He is in down the right again and Ortega initially makes a meal of it but recovers well to make a vital intervention. Spurs are pressing again.

Tottenham Hotspur's Micky van de Ven and Manchester City's Phil Foden battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, LondonTottenham Hotspur's Micky van de Ven and Manchester City's Phil Foden battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London

Tottenham Hotspur’s Micky van de Ven and Manchester City’s Phil Foden battle for the ball during the Premier League match at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, London


09:34 PM BST

76 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Spurs have control of the game here, with City sat deep soaking up pressure. It has to be said Spurs have created little from these kinds of set positions but this is bringing real tension to proceedings.


09:32 PM BST

74 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

A tension has descended over the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium. This is nervy in more ways than one now. Johnson is put through and looks to have a clear sight of goal until Akanji swoops in to shepherd the ball to Ederson.


09:29 PM BST

‘He storms to his seat’

Ederson now throws a strop at having to go off. Having been caught in the head in a clash with Romeo, Ederson has to be replaced by Ortega and is clearly very upset. He storms to his seat and throws down his gloves.

Ederson of Manchester City reacts alongside Pep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City, after being substituted during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandEderson of Manchester City reacts alongside Pep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City, after being substituted during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Ederson of Manchester City reacts alongside Pep Guardiola, Manager of Manchester City, after being substituted during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


09:28 PM BST

71 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Foden tries to wriggle free inside the Spurs’ box after a prodigious crossfield pass by Rodri.

Spurs look dangerous going the other way though as Ortega makes an instant impact, saving Kulusevski’s shot from an acute angle.


09:26 PM BST

68 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Ederson is now being removed, as is De Bruyne. Doku and Ortega come on.


09:23 PM BST

66 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Ederson is going to play on but slips as he gets play going again. The City meidcal staff looked like they went through all the necesaary checks there. We still have not seen a replay.


09:21 PM BST

64 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Ederson is sitting up. That was a shuddering impact. No replay yet shown.


09:19 PM BST

62 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Ederson is clattered by Romero at the back post. The medical staff are on right away. This does not look good for the City goalkeeper. Romero is booked…Ederson looks like he might have been knocked clean out here.

Tottenham's Cristian Romero, left, and Manchester City's goalkeeper Ederson challenge for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur StadiumTottenham's Cristian Romero, left, and Manchester City's goalkeeper Ederson challenge for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium

Tottenham’s Cristian Romero, left, and Manchester City’s goalkeeper Ederson challenge for the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium


09:18 PM BST

59 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

De Bruyne recovers and is back on the pitch…to boos from the Spurs fans. It’s tough to know what they want this evening in truth. Their side have been on the front foot since the goal as Maddison earns a corner after a weaving run.


09:14 PM BST

56 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

Bentancur has just assaulted a chair on the subs bench after being replaced by Kulusevski. De Bruyne goes down in agony after a challenge from Sarr.


09:12 PM BST

‘Are you watching Arsenal’

Haaland puts City ahead and the Spurs fans start to sing ‘Are you watching Arsenal’. Some Tottenham fans could be seen clapping the City goal, too.


09:12 PM BST

53 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 1

What have Spurs got here? There is little coming from the home fans to assist, with City’s away battalions making the lion’s share of the noise.


09:08 PM BST

GOOOOOOAAAALLLLLL!

Erling Haaland…it had to be. Foden does well initially to drive down the left. Hios cross finds Walker, whose neat pass to De Bruyne bets him to the by-line. His fired cross leaves Haaland with the simplest of finishes.

Manchester City's Erling Braut Haaland scores their first goalManchester City's Erling Braut Haaland scores their first goal

Manchester City’s Erling Braut Haaland scores their first goal


09:07 PM BST

‘Dias doing the talking’

Both teams huddled before the game restarted for the second half. Ruben Dias appeared to be doing all the talking in the City huddle. Guardiola was nervously picking at his eyebrows in the City dug-out.


09:06 PM BST

48 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Johnson pulls an awkward ball into the City box. Son rushes near-post and just tries to lift it over Ederson. City clear but that was dangerous.


09:04 PM BST

46 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

WHAT A SAVE! Vicario to Spurs’ rescue again as they give the ball away in a dangerous area. De Bruyne’s snap shot is fierce and Vacario is at full stretch to keep the game level.


09:01 PM BST

Second-half imminent

Spurs emerge with City just behind them. Needless to say, this is a massive 45 minutes.


08:59 PM BST

City are you there?

You have to think Man City are going to emerge with more urgency in this second half. Not that I have a line into the away dressing room but one imagines Pep Guardiola is issuing a roasting on par with any he has delivered this season.

He needs more from his team.

Manchester City's manager Pep Guardiola gestures during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester CityManchester City's manager Pep Guardiola gestures during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City

Manchester City’s manager Pep Guardiola gestures during the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City


08:54 PM BST

Basically this…


08:50 PM BST

‘Guardiola a frustrated figure’

Arsenal fans will be pretty pleased at the moment. That was Tottenham’s best first-half performance at home for some time and only the second time in nine home games that they have not conceded a first-half goal. Postecoglou’s decision not to play a striker has worked out so far. Guardiola looked a frustrated figure in the home dug-out.


08:47 PM BST

Half-time: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

A strange atmosphere appears to have bred a strange game. Spurs have caused City problems but lack any kind of attack threat, while the visitors appear somewhat hypnotised by the library-like surroundings. They have still had the better chances though and should, really, lead.


08:46 PM BST

45 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

City should be one up. Foden dinks a ball into the box and the ball drops to Silva, whose shot is blocked brilliantly on the line by Dragusin. The flag is up the defender would not have known that.


08:45 PM BST

44 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Spurs butcher a golden three on four chance and City turn to break immediately through Gvardiol, who glides past Spurs defenders before chipping a crossfield ball to Silva. The attack breaks down with another poor cross


08:42 PM BST

‘A low-key approach’

The first 35 minutes of the game has passed without incident – the players of both teams just getting on with it. Referee Chris Kavanagh is reading the game well and able to adopt a low-key approach.


08:40 PM BST

‘Stand up if you hate Arsenal’

A loud rendition of ‘stand up if you hate Arsenal’ has just echoed around the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, but the home fans have been encouraged by the way their team are playing. City are finding it difficult.


08:39 PM BST

37 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

City slow the pace as they look to sit on the ball. Kovacic wriggles free and sets up an attack that results in Gvardiol having a decent chance at the back post. It’s a tough volley but he’ll be disappointed not to do better.


08:36 PM BST

35 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Foden is clattered as City look to break but the referee plays a good advantage that is once again squandered by Silva, whose errant pass fails to find De Bruyne. This atmosphere is weird for everyone at present…home side, away side, managers, commentators and, indeed, this blogger.

Erling Haaland of Manchester City and Cristian Romero of Tottenham Hotspur battle for possession during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandErling Haaland of Manchester City and Cristian Romero of Tottenham Hotspur battle for possession during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Erling Haaland of Manchester City and Cristian Romero of Tottenham Hotspur battle for possession during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


08:34 PM BST

33 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Spurs look the likelier in a bizarre first half hour. Johnson drives to the by-line and cuts a cross hard into the area. It’s mis-directed though and straight at Ederson, who spills it out for a corner.


08:32 PM BST

31 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Dias takes his eye off a pass from Akanji inside his own half and Spurs have a throw-in. Even by his lofty standards, Pep Guardiola is seething in his technical area.


08:30 PM BST

29 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Silva feeds De Bruyne into the right-hand channel on the edge of the area but Bentancur is across to quash the danger. Spurs look a touch sharper at the moment.


08:27 PM BST

26 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

I would posit that City are feeling a touch discombobulated by the atmosphere here. They are not keeping possession and appear to be rushing in search of the killer ball rather than the patient build-up we are so accustomed to.

Spurs are pressing here…

Rodrigo Bentancur of Tottenham Hotspur and Mateo Kovacic of Manchester City during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandRodrigo Bentancur of Tottenham Hotspur and Mateo Kovacic of Manchester City during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Rodrigo Bentancur of Tottenham Hotspur and Mateo Kovacic of Manchester City during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


08:25 PM BST

24 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

“You could read a book comfortably here,” says Peter Drury. But the noise soon lifts as Ebntancur is put clean through beyond a high City line. Gvardiol does well at the back post to snuff out the danger.


08:23 PM BST

Great minds…

Kyle Walker is finding a lot of space down the right. Twice now he has got free and failed to find a team-mate. If he gets too many chances, surely he will pick somebody out eventually.


08:23 PM BST

22 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

A delightful move from City ends with another poor cross from Walker but that was lovely one-touch work from De Bruyne and Foden in midfield. Better service from the right back and City would have had at least one serious chance.


08:20 PM BST

19 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

The atmosphere on the TV at least sounds akin to a pre-season game at the moment. The ground sounds echoey and muted despite Spurs’ decent start.

Tottenham Hotspur's Uruguayan midfielder #30 Rodrigo Bentancur reacts after missing to score during the English Premier League football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in LondonTottenham Hotspur's Uruguayan midfielder #30 Rodrigo Bentancur reacts after missing to score during the English Premier League football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London

Tottenham Hotspur’s Uruguayan midfielder #30 Rodrigo Bentancur reacts after missing to score during the English Premier League football match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in London


08:18 PM BST

17 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Excellent block by Gvardiol to deny Brennan Johnson’s cross into the box. A distant cry of ‘Come on you Spurs’…you’d think the players would like to hear more of that.


08:17 PM BST

16 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

What a save from Vicario! A horror show from Hojberg as he slices an attempted clearance into the path of Foden. The City man strikes it well but Vicario sticks out a right arm to make a vital save.

Manchester City's Phil Foden with a shot in the first half during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandManchester City's Phil Foden with a shot in the first half during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Manchester City’s Phil Foden with a shot in the first half during the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


08:15 PM BST

15 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Spurs look a shade shaky against back-to-back City corners…we’ve seen that before.


08:15 PM BST

14 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Walker is put into acres of space down the right but appears to overthink the cross as he enters the box. He tries to cut it back rather than fire across the six-yard box and Spurs clear with ease.


08:13 PM BST

12 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

The Spurs press is fierce and precise early on here and is denying the usual passing lanes on which Rodri feasts. Peter Drury on Sky comments how ‘curiously quiet’ the ground is.


08:11 PM BST

10 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Just a little errant from Man City. Foden glides past a handful of Spurs defenders before feeding Silva, who gives it away in uncharacteristic style. This game is not being played at City’s tempo yet.


08:09 PM BST

8 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

The flag is up but City get Kyle Walker in behind the Spurs high line with ease. You feel that will not be the last time we see that tactic implemented tonight.


08:07 PM BST

7 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Spurs have started really well here. They are dominating the ball in these early stages and City have not settled at all.


08:06 PM BST

5 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Big chance for Spurs. Bentancur picks the ball up on the edge of the box and lashes a shot goalwards. Ederson makes a good save.

Tottenham Hotspur's Rodrigo Bentancur shoots at goalTottenham Hotspur's Rodrigo Bentancur shoots at goal

Tottenham Hotspur’s Rodrigo Bentancur shoots at goal


08:04 PM BST

Spurs’ setup

Spurs seem to be playing without a striker. Son is on the left and Johnson on the right, with Maddison and Sarr starting as advanced midfielders.


08:03 PM BST

3 mins: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Ederson is just so cool with the ball at his feet. You would feel nervous with other keepers but there’s not a hint of nervousness as he evades Johnson and feeds a neat ball to Kovacic.


08:01 PM BST

1 min: Tottenham 0 Man City 0

Untidy from Dragusin early on who feels the pressure of the City press and knocks an errant pass into the stands. Plenty of noise in the opening moments but not sure if that’s home or away fans.


08:00 PM BST

Here we go

We are underway at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.


07:59 PM BST

‘Home end seems a bit muted’

So far the atmosphere in the home end seems a bit muted. The City fans gave their team a rousing welcome, while the Tottenham supporters were pretty quiet. The noise cranked up a bit when the Spurs players’ names were being read out.


07:56 PM BST

The players are in the tunnel…

…kick-off moments away


07:54 PM BST

Under 10 minutes until kick-off

Manchester City's Rodri warms up ahead of the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester CityManchester City's Rodri warms up ahead of the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City

Manchester City’s Rodri warms up ahead of the English Premier League soccer match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City

Son Heung-Min of Tottenham Hotspur warms up before the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandSon Heung-Min of Tottenham Hotspur warms up before the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Son Heung-Min of Tottenham Hotspur warms up before the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Manchester City's Kevin De Bruyne during the warm up before the matchManchester City's Kevin De Bruyne during the warm up before the match

Manchester City’s Kevin De Bruyne during the warm up before the match

Erling Haaland and Ruben Dias of Manchester City during the warm up before the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandErling Haaland and Ruben Dias of Manchester City during the warm up before the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Erling Haaland and Ruben Dias of Manchester City during the warm up before the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


07:51 PM BST

Foreboding? Excitement?

This evening has a curious feeling to it. All the talk about what Spurs fans want has taken attention off the actual matter at hand.

Spurs’ clashes with other big sides at home this season have had a rather crazed feel to them. The kamikaze loss to Chelsea, the north London derby implosion, two games ago against Liverpool.

Things rarely stay on script…tonight may well prove to be the same.


07:47 PM BST

The Arsenal view…

…provided by one William Saliba: “They [Spurs] will try to win. Their fans don’t want them to win against City, but they are good competitors, so they will try their best to win.

“I don’t think [it changes anything for the Tottenham players], because they want to play in the Champions League next season.

“Tottenham is a very good team. Our games with them were not easy. I hope they will be at their best. All the [Arsenal] team will be Tottenham fans on Tuesday. Let’s pray for Tuesday.”


07:44 PM BST

Those are cheers I hear…

…I think.


07:39 PM BST

Arsenal’s best hope?

Man City have proved time and again they have nerves of steel at this point of the league season but Premier League history is littered with examples of teams throwing away title-winning positions.

Revisit five of the most egregious HERE.


07:32 PM BST

Player of the season?

Phil Foden certainly has a case.

Phil Foden of Manchester City warms up prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandPhil Foden of Manchester City warms up prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

Phil Foden of Manchester City warms up prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


07:31 PM BST

30 minutes to go

Half an hour from kick-off at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and the stadium is just starting to fill up slightly. Tough to get an accurate read on the atmosphere as yet but I cannot remember many occasions quite like this in recent Premier League history. You get the sense Spurs fans have no idea what to think or do.


07:21 PM BST

The stakes…visualised


07:16 PM BST

A question…

Is this the first time half-and-half scarves have actually made sense?

A fan holding a half and half Match Day scarf poses for a photo outside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, EnglandA fan holding a half and half Match Day scarf poses for a photo outside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England

A fan holding a half and half Match Day scarf poses for a photo outside the stadium prior to the Premier League match between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on May 14, 2024 in London, England


07:15 PM BST

Word of warning

It is worth nothing that Man City do have, for their lofty standards, a dreadful record against Spurs in the Premier League of late. Guardiola’s side have won just twice in their last eight meetings with Tottenham…


07:12 PM BST

One point…

…to highlight to Spurs fans might be that losing tonight will not mean they have stopped Arsenal winning the league. In truth, Spurs had the chance to do that for real when Arsenal visited them three weeks ago…and we know how that ended.


07:06 PM BST

Walker back for City

For Pep Guardiola it’s just the one change, with talismanic right back Kyle Walker returning, with Nathan Ake dropping to the bench.

Man City XI: Ederson; Walker, Akanji, Dias, Gvardiol; Kovacic, Rodri; Silva, De Bruyne, Foden; Haaland.

Subs: Ortega, Stones, Ake, Grealish, Doku, Alvarez, Nunes, Bobb, Lewis.


07:05 PM BST

Three changes for Spurs

Radu Dragusin, Rodrigo Bentancur and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg all start for Spurs this evening as Ange Postecoglou looks to keep his side’s Champions League hopes alive. Oliver Skipp and Dejan Kulusevski are on the bench, while Yves Bissouma misses out due to a knee injury.

Tottenham XI: Vicario; Porro, Romero, Dragusin, Van de Ven; Sarr, Bentancur, Hojberg; Johnson, Son, Maddison.

Subs: Austin, Skipp, Gil, Royal, Lo Celso, Kulusevski, Scarlett, Moore, Hall.


07:01 PM BST

Team news – confirmed Spurs XI


07:00 PM BST

Team news – confirmed Man City XI


06:56 PM BST

‘I fear we could do the most ‘Spursy’ thing ever’

The worst-case scenario for many Spurs fans this evening is simply putting the title on a platter for their biggest rivals.

  • “If we draw or beat City, and Arsenal then win the league, I will hear about it for the rest of my life”

  • “This is not just a short-term thing. It is the long-term thing it would create if we won Arsenal the league. I don’t think I can live with that”

  • “No Spurs fan wants to see Arsenal lift the trophy. To help them do it would be a disaster. Let’s stick Oliver Skipp in goal”

Read more here


06:42 PM BST

‘It’s so difficult… it’s as simple as that’

Pep Guardiola speaking ahead tonight’s clash: “We have something unique in front of our eyes [but] in the beginning of the season, no, we didn’t think at all about winning four Premier Leagues. But always there has to be something.

“When we were in February, March, April, it was ‘Oh, we are still there – we can do it’ and that ignited something in all our heads to say ‘Guys, no team has done it.’

“That shows how difficult it is. Liverpool in the 1980s, United with Sir Alex Ferguson in the 90s, Chelsea with [Roman] Abramovich and Jose [Mourinho] – even Arsenal with [Arsene] Wenger – they haven’t done it.

“They haven’t done it as it’s so difficult… it’s as simple as that.

“There can be a tendency for complacency, the opponents are better, injuries… there are so many circumstances which happen [and] that’s why you can’t do it.”


06:37 PM BST

All calm…

Will there be any Spurs fans on Tottenham High Road this evening…?

Police officers are pictured outside the stadium before the matchPolice officers are pictured outside the stadium before the match

Police officers are pictured outside the stadium before the match


06:34 PM BST

Injury latest

Richarlison, Ben Davies and Timo Werner are all doubts for Spurs this evening. Pep Guardiola had to pull Nathan Ake off at Craven Cottage at the weekend but can rely on the returning Kyle Walker if the Dutchman is not fit enough to take his place in City’s back four.


06:25 PM BST

Have your say…


06:24 PM BST

The mathematics

Time for the boring but relevant stuff. A City win here would put them two points clear of Arsenal heading into the final day of the season. A draw would leave them level on points but, crucially, with an inferior goal difference. With Arsenal facing a seemingly straightforward task against Everton at home on Sunday, it feels like win or bust for Guardiola’s men.

For Spurs – all ill-feeling towards Arsenal aside – a win is vital should they wish to be in with a shot of earning Champions League football next season. Three points would bring them within two points of Aston Villa and take the race for fourth to the final day.


06:20 PM BST

More from Postecoglou…

“There is a pretty simple notion to this. There is a game of football tomorrow night. What do you think is going to happen? What do you think we are going to do as a team? Or any team on this planet? Aren’t we just going to try and win?

“It’s a simple, basic premise. Now how that makes people feel, I’m not really fussed. I don’t really care. I would hate to think that anyone will think we will go out there tomorrow with anything other than trying to measure ourselves against a top team and maybe win a game of football that’s consequential. How are we ever going to become a team that wins things if in the big games we shy away from it?”


06:19 PM BST

‘I will never understand’

Tottenham manager Ange Postecoglou speaking ahead of this one: “I understand rivalry,” said Postecoglou. “I was part of one of the biggest ones in the world in the last couple of years with Celtic and Rangers, and I understand the rivalry. But I have never, and will never, understand if someone wants their own team to lose.

“That’s not what sport is about. It’s not what I love about the game. What I love more than anything in the game is the competitiveness, challenging yourself to beat someone and coming out successful.

“Anything outside of that, it’s got nothing to do with sport. It’s got nothing to do with me. If other people want to treat it that way, that they get pleasure from other people’s misery, that’s not how I’ve lived my life.”


06:16 PM BST

What do you want?

What an odd feeling there is swirling around this game. Do Spurs fans want to win? Seemingly not judging by social media and other reports – though many of these will surely be somewhat apocryphal.

There might even be Arsenal fans in the stands tonight, having purchased tickets from Spurs supporters, cheering on their sworn enemies. What’s more, Spurs need to win to keep their slim hopes of qualifying for the Champions League alive. It’s all a bit odd I’m afraid and to this reporter with no dog in this particular fight, all rather baffling.

While north London ties itself in knots, however, you feel Pep Guardiola and co will have their eyes firmly fixed on the prize.

Here are Mr Carragher’s thoughts on the moral quandary facing Spurs fans this evening…


06:12 PM BST

Match preview

Something is stirring in the north-west. It is something familiar, something joyous (for a minority) and something that has become almost formulaic.

Book the open-top bus, Man City are just two games from Premier League title number seven. A win tonight at Spurs would leave Pep Guardiola’s side two points clear of Arsenal going into the final round of fixtures this coming Sunday – where only West Ham stand in their way.

The easy assumption is that the City winning machine will simply roll through north London this evening, in keeping with recent City sides’ ruthless reputation at the business end of Premier League seasons. Yet could this be different?

Contemporary evidence suggests not. This is a Spurs side who, until Saturday’s win over Burnley, had lost four straight league games, conceding 13 goals in the process. City, meanwhile, have been serene, netting 15 times over the same period with Wolves the only side to score against them.

In truth, City’s greatest enemy this evening might well be over confidence, such is the air of indestructibility that shrouds them when league title races really heat up. The smart money will be on them to come away with three points against a side who are facing football’s answer to Sophie’s Choice.

Win here and Spurs would all but hand the Premier League title to Arsenal – their bitterest and most local of rivals. Lose and a season which once promised so much risks ending on the kind of bitter note that will ring in the corridors of their Enfield base throughout the summer.

Ange Postecoglou has had his say on that particular quandary and was disparaging of any notion there will be joy in the streets if his side lose and thus lessen the chance of an Arsenal title. And with the title still up for grabs on the final day irrelevant of result, you would imagine the Australian will be demanding nothing but full commitment from players and fans alike this evening.

Perhaps the most interesting spectre hanging over the match is City’s recent record against Spurs, who have without a shadow of doubt have become Guardiola’s bogeyman side. The presumptive champions-elect have beaten Tottenham just once in their last five league meetings but know nothing short of three points tonight will keep the title race in their hands.

Full team news from 7pm.

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