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Guardiola laments Man City’s defending as Spurs go top with 2-0 win

Manchester City’s indifferent start to the season continued, Pep Guardiola’s side slipping to a 2-0 loss to Tottenham on Saturday evening.

Spurs got off to the perfect start in just the fourth minute, a scooped ball from Tanguy Ndombele over a somewhat static Man City defence found the run of Heung Min Son, who took a well-weighted touch before slotting home underneath the advancing Ederson.

Both sides would have well-worked goals ruled out before the break, Kane’s close-range tap in being chalked off for offside, before Aymeric Laporte’s strike was ruled out for a handball by Gabriel Jesus in the buildup.

In somewhat typical Jose Mourinho style, Spurs were content to sit back and hit on the counter, and in the 65th minute, the north London side doubled their advantage. The hugely impressive Harry Kane collecting the ball near the centre circle before carrying it into the City half, the England skipper then playing an excellently weighted ball into substitute Giovanni Lo Celso, who, having only just been introduced, took a touch and slotted through the legs of Ederson for 2-0.

While City dominated possession throughout, they rarely looked like actually breaking down a well-drilled Spurs side, their best chance coming in the last minute of the game, though Ruben Dias’ header was straight at Hugo Lloris who saved smartly.

Speaking afterwards, Guardiola lamented his side’s sloppy defending for the early opener which allowed Spurs the platform to sit back in numbers and play a more counter-attacking game.

“It could be better, we played similar to how have all season,” the City boss told BBC Match of the Day. “We did not defend good for the first goal. They then defended so deep, they defended with six and it was not easy.

“We had our chances, but we couldn’t score and they made two or three chances on the counter attack and we lost the game.

“We knew before the game that you cannot give them the first goal. We had more chances and them but we lost. Mourinho’s teams are like this, you make a mistake and they punish you on the counter attack.

“It is not easy Harry Kane and Ndombele are on halfway, the space is so difficult, our possession play was good, but football is the boxes and that is where we were not good.”

Next up for City is an away trip to face Olympiakos in the Champions League before hosting a so-far winless Burnley side next weekend.

Read – Rating the 14 players to play under Guardiola and Mourinho

See also – Media treatment of Marcus Rashford shows no lessons have been learned from the Sterling witch-hunt

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