Tottenham preview: time for Pellegrini to rethink his midfield

After last week’s debacle, the last opponent City need is another hard working, well organised, title challenging side in excellent form. With injuries to Sagna and Delph reducing Manuel Pellegrini’s options still further, there’s little optimism around. True, Kompany and Silva are available but one has to wonder how fit they are for such a demanding fixture.

Still, City have had a rare full week to recharge and prepare for the game. So have Spurs, but with the older squad City probably needed it more. There’s been plenty of time for Pellegrini to come up with a plan, and central to his thinking should be the setup of the midfield and how to combat a flying Spurs side.

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Verdict: Chelsea 2 Manchester City 1

City succumbed to their first league defeat despite taking the lead courtesy of Mario Balotelli after two minutes. Decisions went against us but it would be wrong to lay all the blame on the referee.

There was a similarity to the Real Madrid v Barcelona match at the weekend. City pressed high up the pitch, scoring early and unsettling the opposition. However such pressing is hard to sustain and eventually the other team came into the game and finished the stronger.

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