Preview: Manchester City vs. Tottenham Hotspur

Preview: Manchester City vs. Tottenham
© PA Photos
Manchester City face a challenge to extend their lead at the top of the Premier League table as they host Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday.

Manchester City have the tough test of extending their lead at the top of the Premier League table as they welcome title challengers Tottenham Hotspur to the Etihad Stadium.

The highly-anticipated clash could throw the title race off balance if Harry Redknapp's side can cause an upset in the North West ahead of Manchester United's battle against Arsenal later that afternoon.

Roberto Mancini remains without captain Vincent Kompany as he continues to serve a four-match ban, which indicates that Stefan Savic will retain his spot at centre-back. Aleksandar Kolarov is likely to make way for Gael Clichy, while James Milner is expected to start on the wing.

With Yaya and Kolo Toure on Africa Cup of Nations duty, Samir Nasri is likely to start in midfield while Edin Dzeko could partner Sergio Aguero up front following his winning goal against Wigan Athletic on Monday.

Meanwhile, Tottenham are unable to call on William Gallas and Ledley King due to injuries, which paves the way for Michael Dawson and Younes Kaboul to line up in defence. Scott Parker is expected to retain his place following his comeback from injury against Wolverhampton Wanderers last week.

The biggest blow to Harry Redknapp's side is the loss of striker Emmanuel Adebayor, who is on loan from City and therefore not permitted to play against them. The frontman's absence will allow Jermain Defoe to gain a starting spot.

Current form:

Manchester City: WWDLWW
Tottenham: DWDWWD

Possible lineups:

Manchester City: Hart; Clichy, Lescott, Savic, Richard; Milner, Barry, Nasri, Silva; Aguero, Dzeko

Tottenham: Friedel; Assou-Ekotto, Kaboul, Dawson, Walker; Bale, Modirc, Parker, Lennon; Van der Vaart, Defoe

Sports Mole says: 2-2

Roberto Mancini
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