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Shackling Dzeko among 3 things Spurs must do better at Etihad

| 16.10.2014

Following last season’s 6-0 mauling at the Etihad last season, the very sight of a trip to Manchester City will have armchair Tottenham fans looking for excuses to get down to B&Q instead on Saturday lunchtime instead.

Odds of 1/2 say that City will prevail once more, while Tottenham are the 11/2 outsiders and the draw is 16/5.

For those Lilywhites brave enough to tune in, here’s three things Mauricio Pochettino may wish to consider doing if the Argentine is to prevent any chance of a repeat.

Keep things tight for at least the first minute

A poor clearance from Hugo Lloris allowed Jesus Navas to score this expert chip within the first 15 seconds, which set the tone for the rest of the contest.

Pochettino’s side must play it safe early doors and prevent City sniffing blood.

Make sure Edin Dzeko is properly marshalled

Some players simply love to score against the same opponents and Dzeko v Spurs is a case in point; his current tally stands at six.

The Bosnian has bagged four in as many City appearances before finding the net for Bosnia against Belgium just a few days shy of this clash.

Jan Vertonghen played in that match and being more mobile than Younes Kaboul should be allotted the task of keeping Dzeko quiet.

Play Dembele alongside Capoue in the centre of the park

If Spurs can remain in the game in the first half, then bringing flair off the bench is a great option for Pochettino, such as Erik Lamela or Andros Townsend.

However, to start with more physical players such as Mousa Dembele and Etienne Capoue are best served mixing it in the middle of the park with Yaya Toure and co.

The bruising Belgian wasn’t brought on until the hour mark last season, when five goals had already sailed in.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Christian Crowther

Give Christian a sport with anything remotely spherical in it and he’ll happily while away the hours watching it on the box. However, he’d much prefer writing about, playing or betting on golf, football, cricket, tennis, snooker.... you get the picture.