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Manchester City can afford no slip-ups at Tottenham – Guardiola

Pep Guardiola's men stand on the brink of history but must first overcome a tricky test at Tottenham

Pep Guardiola

Pep Guardiola accepts only a win at Tottenham tomorrow night will be enough for Manchester City to maintain their quest to make history and register a fourth successive top-flight title.

Arsenal’s win at Manchester United yesterday means the pressure is on the defending champions, who head to Spurs for their game in hand a point behind Mikel Arteta’s men.

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A draw is unlikely to be enough with Arsenal holding a goal difference of +61 compared to City’s +58 ahead of the final round of fixtures this weekend.

Guardiola said: “This is a team that we’ve played twice this season. If we don’t win we aren’t going to win the Premier League, so this is what we have to do.

“It’s always so demanding to play there [at Tottenham], especially this season. They are so aggressive. At Anfield they are losing 4-0 but they continue to stick to what they believe.

“There are difficulties but we know what we are playing for.”

City have a poor record at the new Tottenham Stadium, losing all of their first five games at the venue before registering a late 1-0 win there in this season’s FA Cup.

“We played really good there many times but weren’t able to score or win games,” added Guardiola.

“We are trying to do something special so we have to do that this time.

“This is the time to do it otherwise Arsenal will be champions.

“The mindset is just what we need to do to win the game. The other situations can’t be in your mind because everyone knows what we are playing for.”

Should City prevail in their tussle with Arsenal, they will become the first English club to win the title four years on the trot.

And Guardiola is motivated at the thought of earning a place in the record books.

He said: “We know how difficult it is to be in this position again but we have something unique in front of us.

“We have to read exactly the game we want to play and interpret it as best we can.

“The right tension and focus has to be there. If you play these games too relaxed it’s a big problem.

“Tottenham are playing for the Champions League so they have a huge target but we have a huge target too.”

Tottenham are unlikely to make the top four, but Guardiola remains a big fan of his Spurs counterpart Ange Postecoglou.

“I have huge respect for Ange and his team,” he said.

“They make an incredible process and are so quick in the transition, they attack the channels so quick and are so intense in the press. We have to be ready for 90 or 95 minutes.”

England winger Jack Grealish is available for City who will wait to see if Nathan Ake trains today before determining whether he will make the trip south.

Picture of Jon Fisher

Jon Fisher

Jon has over 20 years' experience in sports journalism having worked at the Press Association, Goal and Stats Perform, covering three World Cups, an Olympics and numerous other major sporting events.

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