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Combined XI: Tottenham Hotspur vs. Manchester City

Ahead of Saturday's Premier League clash between Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City, Sports Mole selects its strongest combined XI from the two squads.

Tottenham Hotspur welcome Manchester City to North London on Saturday afternoon for the latest showdown between old managerial rivals Jose Mourinho and Pep Guardiola.

Spurs boast a five-point lead over their visitors in the Premier League table and would temporarily move top simply by avoiding defeat to the Citizens.

However, Mourinho will no doubt be eyeing all three points for his in-form side, while Man City will know that anything other than victory for themselves would be another setback to their title chances following a distinctly average start to the season.

Here, Sports Mole selects its strongest combined XI from the two squads, using only players in contention to feature this weekend.

Combined XI: TOT vs. MNC

These two sides both possess the joint-best defensive record in the league, although their tallies of nine goals conceded - which is shared with three other clubs - is not exactly something to shout about.

Nonetheless, they both boast one of the best goalkeepers in the division, but it is last season's Golden Gloves winner Ederson who gets the nod for us ahead of Hugo Lloris.

Indeed, despite plenty of question marks being raised over their defence in recent times, Man City provide four of our back five in this XI, including a former Tottenham player in Kyle Walker.

With Matt Doherty unavailable due to COVID-19 it was a fairly straightforward decision at right-back, and the same is true on the opposite flank where Sergio Reguilon benefits from uncertainty over Benjamin Mendy and Oleksandr Zinchenko, and pips Joao Cancelo to left-back.

Aymeric Laporte and Ruben Dias have begun to forge a promising partnership at centre-back - perhaps even putting Man City's troubles in that area of the field behind them - and that earns them both places in this team ahead of Toby Alderweireld and Eric Dier.

Fernandinho remains a doubt for this weekend's match, which means that Rodri is the clear choice in a holding midfield role, although Tottenham duo Moussa Sissoko and Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg have both impressed this season too.

The latter gets the nod alongside Rodri having helped dictate play as well as breaking it up for Tottenham this season, making more passes than any other player in the Premier League in 2020-21.

A star-studded front four means that some other big names also miss out, including the likes of Gabriel Jesus, Gareth Bale, Ferran Torres, Riyad Mahrez and Sergio Aguero, the latter of whom is doubtful for this match.

Raheem Sterling could also miss out this weekend after being sent home from England duty with a calf problem, although he is battling to recover in time and the possibility of him featuring is enough to earn him a place in the XI.

The winger is forced over to the right due to the fine form of Son Heung-min on the left, though, with the South Korean having directly contributed to 15 goals across all competitions already this season.

The only Premier League player who can better that tally is teammate Harry Kane, who has incredibly had a direct hand in 23 goals from just 14 outings this term. The duo have formed a telepathic relationship up front, with Kane already contributing eight Premier League assists in 2020-21, and they were both shoo-ins for this lineup.

Kevin De Bruyne also falls into the category of 'impossible to leave out', even if he is yet to hit the incredible heights he reached so consistently last season.

Video prediction

Watch the Sports Mole Football Shorts prediction for this game below:


Who will win Saturday's Premier League clash between Tottenham and Man City?

Man City
Man City
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Kevin De Bruyne scores for Manchester City against Wolverhampton Wanderers on September 21, 2020
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Combined XI: Manchester City vs. Liverpool
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rhs 2.0
Todays Game Header Right
1Tottenham HotspurSpurs96212191220
4Leicester CityLeicester96031812618
7Aston Villa85031911815
8West Ham UnitedWest Ham94231510514
9Wolverhampton WanderersWolves9423910-114
10Manchester UnitedMan Utd84131314-113
11Crystal Palace94141213-113
13Manchester CityMan City83321011-112
14Leeds UnitedLeeds93241417-311
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle93241015-511
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton92341315-29
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom9036618-123
20Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd9018415-111

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