Cape Town - "Here we go again,” you can almost hear Pep Guardiola think to himself.
Football is crazy and at this time of the year it’s crazy and relentless. Manchester City’s legacy is slowly being chipped away to mere “champions” after looking like one of the best teams in Europe until just a few weeks ago.
Since then, Pep’s City have lost to Manchester at home after being 2-0 up and on the verge of winning the league earlier than it’s ever been done before. That loss came on the back of a Champions League thrashing at the hands of Liverpool at Anfield.
“Fear not,” those in Sky Blue would’ve thought. Liverpool must still come to our home ground and we have the firepower to beat anyone just like we’ve been doing all season.
Reading this, you will know that those Sky Blues were let down badly with Guardiola exposing his frailties to a manager who can work him out and his susceptibility to the pressures of top-flight management. The season that promised so much will not deliver their first Champions League title, they didn’t even get close.
Next up for Spurs: A rampant Spurs.
The London club are unbeaten in what feels like forever - 14 matches with just three draws in that - and need a positive result to break their best ever unbeaten run in the Premier League. Only the team back in 1967 had a longer run with 20 in the old first division.
Spurs have a decent record having lost only once in their last five league outings against City and to boot have won the last two home games. History is on their side. History and form with the win against Chelsea proving that Mauricio Pochettino can finally deliver against the big clubs what he’s done for so long to those that reside lower down the table.
Pochettino will have licked his lips at what’s been happening to Guardiola in recent weeks, the match sets up perfectly in his favour and will no doubt be asking his attackers to probe the holes that have been so apparent in City’s defence.
What Guardiola can do to prevent a complete capitulation is unclear such is the decline of his star-studded all-action line-up over the past few matches. If Barcelona can lose 3-0 at Roma, then Spurs should be massive favourites to add to the pain the champions in waiting are going through.
For City, they will know that the league is done and dusted. They will win it but it may, rather will, get worse before it gets better.
Betting: Spurs v Man City