Inside Man City’s amazing Tottenham Hotspur Stadium hoodoo as stats make horror reading for Pep Guardiola

PEP GUARDIOLA said he still has one big ambition to achieve in England after leading Manchester City to a historic treble last season.

The Etihad chief was asked what it was back in May and smiled: “To score a goal against Spurs away.”

Erling Haaland and Manchester City stars after their defeat at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last season


Erling Haaland and Manchester City stars after their defeat at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium last seasonCredit: Getty
Raheem Sterling dejected after City's first defeat at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in 2019


Raheem Sterling dejected after City’s first defeat at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in 2019Credit: News Group Newspapers Ltd

He put his hands together in prayer before adding: “Yeah I’ll stay because I want to beat Spurs away.”

Five times they have tried since the gleaming new North London venue opened in spring 2019 – and five times they have failed.

For a team who pride themselves on the number of goals they score, it’s an incredible statistic.

On Friday night they have another chance to smash that hoodoo once and for all – and their 9,000 travelling fans might think they will never have a better chance.

City travel on the back of a 13-day break – and spent part of it enjoying some sunshine on a warm weather training camp in Abu Dhabi.

And Ange Postecoglou’s men are weakened by injuries and international call-ups.

Neutrals might think it is all set up for an away win – but we’ve been here before, several times.

City were one of the first visitors to the new home of Spurs for a Champions League quarter final first leg in April 2019.



They had the chance to be one of the first scorers too – but Sergio Aguero’s 11th minute penalty was saved by Hugo Lloris as Spurs won by a single goal.

Ten months later, they wasted another chance from the spot – again saved by Lloris but this time Ilkay Gundogan was the culprit.

Oleks Zinchenko’s red card allowed Jose Mourinho’s side to take advantage and win with two second half goals.

In November 2020, at least City did get the ball in the net at their bogey ground – only for Aymeric Laporte’s effort to be ruled out for a handball by Gabriel Jesus.

Once again it ended in a 2-0 defeat for Pep’s men which saw Spurs go top of the table.

The following summer, City tried to sign Tottenham’s captain and top goalscorer Harry Kane – maybe thinking he could help end the curse.

But the move didn’t happen and the visitors looked toothless on the opening day of the 2021/2 season – as Son Heung Min scored the only goal.

And on their last visit, 12 months ago, they saw a Riyad Mahrez effort cannon down off the underside of the bar and come out.

Spurs went down to ten men late on but City still couldn’t find a way through – meaning Kane’s early strike was enough.

Now though, Erling Haaland could be on the bench after finally shaking off a foot injury and his team travel to the capital on the back of six straight wins.

So surely they will get a goal this time – won’t they?

But don’t bet on it.

Pep Guardiola just wants Manchester City to score a goal at Tottenham


Pep Guardiola just wants Manchester City to score a goal at TottenhamCredit: Rex Features

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