Ange Postecoglou has revealed Tottenham have a deadline if they want to make Timo Werner’s loan deal permanent.

The German joined Spurs on loan in January from RB Leipzig, scoring twice and assisting three goals in 14 matches in all competitions for the North London side.

However, Werner missed the last five games of Spurs’ season due to a hamstring injury he sustained against Arsenal.

Postecoglou admitted that he was relaxed about the situation, but whether a deal was made was out of his hands.

Speaking to reporters following their friendly in Melbourne against Newcastle United, Postecoglou said: "I think from our perspective, there's a deadline there.

"Again, a lot of that will depend on the negotiations between the clubs and how Timo feels.

"Again, from my perspective, I'm comfortable with that situation, and I'll let the other guys steer it to see what kind of outcome there is."

After a strong start to their season, Spurs eventually finished fifth in the Premier League, securing a place in the Europa League next season.

The Australian also believes the club need to bring more attacking players in as a priority to balance the higher workload next season after struggling with injuries this campaign.

"Yeah, absolutely. It's no secret [we need new forwards]. You saw the way we finished the season," he said.

"We obviously lost Richarlison and Timo Werner as well with injuries, but we're fairly light in that area.

"We started last season with Manor [Solomon] and [Ivan] Perisic, and we were quite healthy in that front third in terms of numbers, but as the year went on it became pretty evident that we needed to bulk up.

"We're in Europe as well next year, so we'll have more games, and it's definitely an area of the park we'll need to strengthen."

Newcastle United overcame Tottenham on penalties following a 1-1 draw in Wednesday's controversial friendly in Melbourne, just three days after the end of the Premier League season.

A crowd of 78,419 packed into Melbourne Cricket Ground to watch two of the Premier League's top seven face off in a post-season game which had been criticised on player welfare grounds. 

James Maddison celebrated being named in England's preliminary Euro 2024 squad by firing home Spurs' opener after 32 minutes, before his Three Lions team-mate Kieran Tripper was substituted after just 36 minutes.

Alexander Isak levelled from close range on the stroke of half-time, and the game went straight to spot-kicks after neither team was able to force a second-half winner. 

Bryan Gil was denied by Mark Gillespie from Tottenham's first kick, with the nine subsequent attempts all successful as the Magpies triumphed 5-4.

After the game, Newcastle boss Howe moved to allay fears over Trippier's condition, saying his withdrawal was planned.

"We spoke with Kieran and thought the best thing to do was for him to start the game," Howe said.

"He's still in the early stages of recovery from his calf problem, we didn't want to take risks with him so half an hour was the aim. No injury there."  

Ange Postecoglou, meanwhile, immediately turned his attentions towards the transfer window after failing to oversee a win in his native Australia.

"Last year, it certainly benefited us having a couple in early and having all the whole squad for pre-season," he said. 

"Everyone wants to do business early, everyone is keen to bring players in but the reality of it is it usually takes a little bit of time.

"But the good thing for us is we know what we need to do, we've had the plan in place for quite a while and it's just about now going through that process." 

Ange Postecoglou believes his Tottenham players will enjoy the experience of facing Newcastle United in Melbourne, despite the post-season trip attracting fierce criticism from some quarters.

Spurs face Newcastle at Melbourne Cricket Ground on Wednesday, just three days after they rounded off their Premier League season with a 3-0 win at Sheffield United.

The trip has been strongly criticised on player welfare grounds, with former Newcastle striker Alan Shearer describing it as "madness". 

Last year, a report from global players' union Fifpro warned fixture congestion was at "dangerous" levels and said more must be done to protect players.

Despite the negativity surrounding the fixture, Postecoglou believes his players will relish walking out at Australia's most iconic sporting venue.

"I said to the lads, 'I know it's a long way but I think you'll enjoy playing at the G'," Postecoglou said at a press conference on Tuesday.

"It's not easy because we played Sheffield on Sunday afternoon and we basically got straight on the plane to come out here.

"So we all lost Monday from our lives, but we're here now and hopefully when the boys walk out tomorrow night and there's 80,000 people at the 'G', the rest of it is irrelevant, and I'm sure they are looking forward to it."

Sunday's win at Bramall Lane ensured Tottenham finished fifth in the Premier League table, securing Europa League qualification for next season.

Postecoglou does not think fixture congestion will hamper them in 2024-25, saying the absence of European football set Spurs back in their first campaign under him.

"That's the reward for finishing strong this year so I think we're looking forward to that," he said.

"It's another challenge for us and we'll be ready for it. I think not having European football this year cost us a bit in terms of our development.

"This club deserves to be in Europe and hopefully we can make an impact next year."

Ange Postecoglou warned Tottenham he will not settle until the club hits the "lofty ambitions" targeted in his mind.

Spurs were 3-0 victors over Sheffield United at Bramall Lane on Sunday, ending their Premier League season with a convincing win to finish fifth in the table.

Postecoglou voiced his frustrations after Tuesday's 2-0 defeat to Manchester City ended their hopes of Champions League football next term.

The Spurs head coach was far more relaxed after his side performed well in Sheffield, with Dejan Kulusevski twice on target, along with a goal for Pedro Porro against the relegated Blades.

Yet Postecoglou insisted his ambitions remain high as the Australian attempts to take Tottenham to the next level.

"Contrary to my general demeanour, I have loved every minute of it," former Celtic boss Postecoglou said of his first season in charge of Tottenham.

"It is a great challenge in the Premier League and taking over a big club that didn't have a great year last year. You understand it is not going to run smoothly, but I have enjoyed the whole season.

"I have got some lofty ambitions for the football club and until we reach that point I am not going to be smiling too much.

"As I said, all any manager wants is maximum effort and I have got that from everyone involved. I have enjoyed it and looking forward to pushing on from here."

Asked to summarise his first campaign in England's top league, Postecoglou continued: "It's been good, it's been eventful, it's had a bit of everything.

"I am obviously not delighted with the way we finished the season but in fairness to the players and staff we have been in the top five all season, in a year where there was a fair bit of upheaval.

"We finished eighth last year, player turnover, different football, different way of training, it is not easy to maintain a level when you are trying to do that.

"Even in our tough periods this year we have still been competitive for the most part."

Kulusevski scored his seventh and eighth Premier League goals of the season (36 outings), more than he managed in his first two league campaigns with Tottenham combined (seven across 48 games).

Only in the 2019-20 season with Parma has the Sweden winger scored more times in a league season (10 in Serie A), and Postecoglou hailed Kulusevski's returns.

He added: "I thought Deki was good. He's worked awfully hard this year without a lot of reward in the front third.

"We thought playing him through middle today would help us with his mobility and ability to run in behind. He did well.

"He always works hard but it's that sort of final third where we need him to get rewards and he got them today so he did well."

Erling Haaland had no doubts over Manchester City winning the Premier League title after Tuesday's win at Tottenham, with that expectation coming to fruition against West Ham five days later.

Phil Foden scored an early double before Rodri's second-half strike made sure of a fourth straight top-flight crown with Sunday's 3-1 victory over David Moyes' visitors at Etihad Stadium.

City are the first team in English top-flight history to lift the title in four consecutive seasons, having won the league in 2020-21, 2021-22, 2022-23 and 2023-24 campaigns.

That success appeared somewhat a certainty after Haaland scored twice in the midweek 2-0 victory over Spurs, with the Norway talisman sure City would get over the line and pip Arsenal to glory.

"After we beat Spurs we kind of knew we were going to do it," the City forward told Sky Sports. "I was confident."

City have now gone 35 matches unbeaten in all competitions (W29 D6), the longest run ever by a Premier League team, as Pep Guardiola's title-winning machine continues to power on.

It was a similar story as to the last campaign, when City edged past Arsenal for the top-flight crown once more, as Guardiola's team continue to deliver when the title run-in starts.

"It's like that every year," Haaland said of City's tendency to click into gear when the decisive part of the season arrives.

"It's like we add on a little bit extra because that's when it really matters. I'm happy and I can't complain."

Haaland managed 27 goals from 31 appearances this season, finishing five goals ahead of Chelsea attacking midfielder Cole Palmer, to secure consecutive Golden Boot awards in the Premier League.

On winning his second successive individual award, he added: "It's not bad. There's not much to say, it's better to just play football and don't speak too much. Let other people do the speaking and that's better.

"It's been harder than I expected [playing in the Premier League]. Every game, the way every game is not like a final but it's not far away.

"You come away somewhere or even at home you can't relax. Every game is so intense and tough."

As for working under Guardiola, Haaland is thankful for partnering with the Spaniard, whose six English top-flight titles can only be matched by Alex Ferguson (13), George Ramsay and Bob Paisley (both six).

"It's a bit demanding at times, it's tough but look what he's done," Haaland said of City's manager.

"He demands a lot every single day. If you don't live up to what he expects you have a big problem. He's demanding and he's a lovely guy and I love him to pieces."

Dejan Kulusevski scored twice as Tottenham claimed fifth place in the Premier League with a 3-0 win over Sheffield United on Sunday.

The Swede clinically picked out the back of the net in both halves to put Spurs in control and seal a UEFA Europa League place for next season.

Pedro Porro's rifled effort was sandwiched between Kulusevski’s goals, while the Blades avoided some late drama as Andre Brooks had a red card overturned after a VAR review.

Ange Postecoglou's Tottenham side finished three points clear of Chelsea, while Sheffield United go back down to the Championship having finished bottom of the table.

Spurs were put under early pressure as Ben Brereton Diaz blazed a volley over the bar after just three minutes before scuffing a second shot against the far post shortly after.

Kulusevski then punished the Blades for their lack of clinical edge as he scored with Spurs’ first shot of the game, hitting his low strike in off the post as Son Heung-Min claimed his 10th Premier League assist of the season.

Rodrigo Bentancur almost recreated the Swede’s goal just before the half-hour mark, but his shot bounced off the inside of the post to Son, who forced a good save out of Wes Foderingham.

United were further indebted to their goalkeeper as he stretched to tip Porro’s effort away before smothering James Maddison’s low strike on the stroke of half-time.

Cameron Archer could have dragged the Blades back into the tie just after the break, as he brilliantly held off Cristian Romero before seeing his shot smothered by Guglielmo Vicario, but the offside flag spared his blushes.

Despite a slow start to the second half, the visitors soon found their footing when Porro rifled a powerful effort over Foderingham after the goalkeeper had reflexively kept out Micky van de Ven.

Six minutes later, Kulusevski got the better of the home side’s defence again, latching onto Maddison’s low cross to slot in his eighth Premier League goal of the season.

There was late drama as substitute Brooks was shown a red card for a push on Son during a Sheffield United corner, but the referee overturned his original decision after a VAR review.

Down and out

The hosts were playing for pride in their final Premier League game of the season, but as is the story of their season, they just could not build on a promising start.

Though they created some excellent chances to put Spurs on the back foot, they lacked a cutting edge before their defensive woes once again came to the fore.  

The Blades conceded 104 goals this season - already a league-high before the match - while they finished with a goal difference of -69. That’s the joint-worst goal difference in Premier League history alongside Derby County in 2007-08.

Leading from the front

Tottenham simply needed a point to assure themselves of fifth place, and with their captain's help, they managed to book a place in the Europa League next season.

Son set up Kulusevski for the opener to reach double figures in assists this season - it is the third time in his career that he has both scored and assisted 10+ goals in a single campaign. The South Korean is one of only six players to reach the milestone in three separate Premier League seasons. 

Tottenham's Ange Postecoglou had "the worst experience" he has had during his managerial career when Spurs lost to Manchester City.

Spurs went down 2-0 at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Tuesday, as City went top of the Premier League heading into the final day of the season.

There was a peculiar atmosphere, with Spurs supporters seemingly torn as to whether to fully back their team, given a positive result would have all but handed Arsenal, their biggest rivals, the title.

Postecoglou was in spiky form in the post-match media conference, suggesting there was a "fragility" to the club.

On Friday, ahead of Spurs' final game of the season against relegated Sheffield United, the Australian explained he feared people would question his integrity.

"That's probably the worst experience I've had as a football manager in a game," he said.

"Once I realised I'd got it wrong in terms of what the atmosphere was going to be like and what people felt, I got a real anxiety within me of, 'What happens if Man City, the best team in the world, who were disposing of teams quite easily in the lead-up, what if we play as well as we can but they beat us 5-0?'

"I got cold sweats thinking about people questioning my integrity and the people I work with.

"Even watching the game back, there was a comment on the commentary, 'Oh, Tottenham are having a real go here'.

"That's why I was animated on the night. I didn't enjoy the night.

"I needed the boys – and credit to them – aside from everything else, their football was outstanding on the night. That was important for our football club. It would have cast aspersions on us as a football club. I don't think anyone can say we didn't make Man City earn that win the other night.

"It could have gone a very different way, just by Man City being Man City."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Sheffield United – Ben Brereton Diaz

Brereton Diaz has scored six goals for the Blades since he arrived on loan from Villarreal, and may be out to end on a high note in order to try and secure a Premier League move for next season.

Tottenham – James Maddison

Maddison has created 62 chances for Tottenham in the Premier League this season, the most by a player in their debut season for Spurs since Christian Eriksen in 2013-14 (68). It is the most overall by an Englishman since Dele Alli in 2017-18 (64).

MATCH PREDICTION: TOTTENHAM WIN

Spurs have lost five of their last six Premier League matches (W1), one more than in their previous 18 games combined (W10 D4 L4). However, they are unbeaten in 11 games against the side starting the day bottom (W8 D3), scoring 35 goals.

The Blades have a goal difference of -66 – defeat by four goals here will see them finish the campaign with the worst goal difference in Premier League history (currently -69 by Derby County in 2007-08).

They have conceded 101 Premier League goals this season, the outright most in a single campaign. In a top-flight season with a maximum of 20 teams, only Leicester in 1908-09 (102) and Darwen in 1891-92 (112) have shipped more.

Tottenham have lost their final league game in just one of the last 13 seasons (W10 D2), with that loss coming at already-relegated Newcastle United in 2015-16 (1-5).

Tottenham won 3-1 in their last away league game against Sheffield United, last winning consecutive visits to Bramall Lane in December 1975.

OPTA WIN PROBABILITY

Sheffield United – 11.7%

Tottenham – 67.7%

Draw – 20.6%

Unai Emery says Aston Villa have achieved their dream after qualification for next season's Champions League was secured.

Tottenham's 2-0 defeat to Manchester City on Tuesday left Ange Postecoglou's fifth-place side five points behind Villa, who subsequently sealed a fourth-place finish with a game to spare.

More importantly, the Villans are back in UEFA's premier club competition for the first time since the 1982-83 season, when they suffered European Cup quarter-final elimination to Juventus.

Additionally, the club secured their highest top-flight finish since the 1995-96 campaign, which they also ended in fourth place.

Emery, whose side reached this season's Europa Conference League semi-finals, now has his sights set on Europe's top prize next season, in which he is demanding even more from his players.

"It's a very special day," the Spaniard told Villa's official media channels. "It was our dream when we started the season to be here. To play Champions League is, after the Premier League, the best.

"You can play in the Premier League against the best teams in the world, it's very difficult. When you are playing in the Champions League, you are playing against the best teams, at the same time, from other countries. And it's amazing.

"We know the history of Aston Villa is so long and so successful. Even in the Champions League, we knew the responsibility was to try to increase our level, try to be demanding and to dream.

"I want to enjoy more and, next year, the new challenge starts for us. To build a team again, and be strong to go and always increase our level; this is our objective."

Pep Guardiola believes Manchester City will feel pressure similar to "the serve to win Wimbledon" when they look to secure the Premier League title on the final day of the season.

The Citizens took a giant stride towards clinching a record-breaking fourth successive top-flight crown with a 2-0 win over Tottenham on Tuesday.

Erling Haaland struck twice in the second half as City leapfrogged Arsenal to top spot, while moving two points clear of the Gunners with one match remaining.

Guardiola's side, who welcome West Ham to the Etihad Stadium on the final day, are red-hot favourites to seal the deal with a victory, with Opta predicting they have an 84.3 per cent chance of winning the league now.

But the Spaniard admits it is not a foregone conclusion and will not be plain sailing, and highlighted similar memorable examples of where City have had to really dig deep to get over the line.

 

"The tennis players say 'the serve to win Wimbledon', the last game is the most difficult one," he told BBC Sport. "We know what we're playing for. The tension is there."

"[The players] were playing for the consequences of the result [in the first half against Tottenham]," he told reporters in his news conference. "When you do that, you are going to lose the Premier League. You cannot perform to your level. They are human beings, I understand the pressure.

"Not even Arsenal played well against Manchester United [the Gunners' 1-0 win at Old Trafford]. They knew if they did not win there, they would not win the Premier League. It will be the same on Sunday for us against West Ham.

"We will feel the pressure. Look at Aston Villa a few seasons ago, 2-0 down with 15 minutes to go. Sergio Aguero against QPR, went to 93 minutes. It is normal. That is why we talk and say everyone has to relax, and do what they have to do. That is all."

Ange Postecoglou claimed the foundations at Tottenham are "really fragile" after a 2-0 defeat to Manchester City put paid to their Champions League qualification hopes.

Erling Haaland struck twice in the second half as City leapfrogged Spurs' bitter rivals Arsenal to return to the Premier League summit heading into the final day.

Postecoglou had been left flabbergasted in the build-up by Tottenham fans claiming they would be happy to lose to Pep Guardiola's side in order to dent the Gunners' title bid.

And while there was a generally flat atmosphere inside the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium, home supporters were filmed celebrating City's opening goal while others chanted "are you watching Arsenal?"

The head coach, who was also captured arguing with a Spurs fan, was left far from impressed as his side's top-four hopes ended, with Aston Villa securing a place in next season's Champions League at their expense.

"The foundations are really fragile," he said. "The last 48 hours have shown me that. "It's inside the club, outside the club, everywhere. It's been an interesting exercise. It's just my observations.

"I can't dictate what people do. They're allowed to express themselves any way they want. But when we've got late winners in games, it's because the crowd has helped us.

"Maybe, I'm out of step, but I just don't care, I just want to win. I want to be successful at this football club; that's why I was brought in. So how other people want to feel, and what their priorities are, are of zero interest to me.

"I know what's important to build a winning team - that's what I need to concentrate on."

Ange Postecoglou was left to rue missed chances as Tottenham's Champions League hopes were ended after Tuesday's 2-0 defeat to Manchester City.

Spurs needed three points to take the Premier League's top-four race to the final day but were undone by Pep Guardiola's side, who moved within touching distance of another top-flight title.

Erling Haaland's routine tap-in from Kevin De Bruyne's brilliance after 51 minutes proved a cruel blow before the City striker's stoppage-time penalty sealed a decisive three points.

It could have been a different story, though, if Stefan Ortega – on as a second-half substitute for Ederson – did not deny Heung-min Son's gilt-edged chance following Manuel Akanji's error.

The City goalkeeper denied the onrushing Spurs forward when one-on-one with the visitors 1-0 up, and Postecoglou acknowledged his side failed to seize their opportunities.

"We lost the game so it was a missed chance for three points," the frustrated Tottenham manager told Sky Sports.

"We had the opportunities and we had to punish them. It was a tight game and in the big moments we were not able to capitalise and they were.

"I thought we were in the game the whole time, even at 1-0 we had a great chance to go level.

"In the second half we were chasing the game so they got a little more space but I thought we were well in it up until that point [the second goal]."

Spurs' loss proved Aston Villa's gain as Unai Emery's side qualified for the Champions League for the first time in their history, ending a 41-year absence after last featuring in the European Cup in 1982-83.

Postecoglou found it hard to seek the immediate positives, having watched Tottenham fall short and inadvertently damage rivals Arsenal's title hopes in the process.

"We lost the game so I am disappointed," the Australian added, before responding to whether any pride could be taken. 

"Not right now because we have lost. We will assess the season, still one more game to go, one more game against Sheffield United and we need to make sure we win.

"I think wherever you finish is a fair reflection of where you are at."

Tottenham will finish outside the top four for the fourth time in the last five seasons, after finishing in the Champions League spots in Mauricio Pochettino’s final four full campaigns in charge (2015-16 to 2018-19).

Postecoglou acknowledged there is still work to do to catch up with England's perennial champions City.

Asked how his side measure up to Guardiola's men, he said: Nothing earth-shattering that I didn't know before the game. We still have some work to do. We need to do some work to catch up."

Manchester City know they cannot let complacency set in as they aim to make Premier League history, so says Rodri.

City beat Tottenham 2-0 on Tuesday, taking a huge stride towards winning an unprecedented fourth straight Premier League title.

Erling Haaland scored twice, with his second – a calmly taken spot-kick in stoppage time – came after a string of fine stops from Stefan Ortega.

City's stand-in goalkeeper replaced the injured Ederson just after the hour mark, and twice denied Dejan Kulusevski before making an exceptional save to prevent Son Heung-min scoring in a one-v-one.

With one game left, City are two points above Arsenal, and Rodri knows the job must now be done against West Ham on Sunday.

"It's unbelievable. For us, it gives us the chance to fight again in the last game," he told Sky Sports.

"We know it's one more game, but you saw the character of the team, of course it wasn't our best performance, but we came here to win – that's what we do. It's the mentality of these guys, the substitutions, Stefan saved us, Jeremy was unbelievable, every player that came in was exceptional.

"This is football. We have the best striker in the world and today he made the difference, but today, Stefan was simply incredible. We were 1-0 up and he made three outstanding saves. I have no words. We want to make history again, but we have one more to come.

"We have the experience from against Aston Villa [in 2022]. We know it's not done. We know it's going to be tough, but if we do it, we can change history."

Kyle Walker echoed the sentiment.

"We know it's not done, but we've taken it down to the last game, in front of our fans," he said. "You have to take each game as it comes."

City are now unbeaten in 22 consecutive Premier League games (W18 D4), including all 18 in 2024 (W15 D3); however, the last two teams to make as long an unbeaten start to a calendar year have failed to go on to win the title in that same year (Liverpool in 2022 – second and Chelsea in 2008 – second).

Pep Guardiola's team will sit top of the Premier League table heading into the final day of the season for the sixth time in the last seven seasons, having gone on to win the title in each of those previous campaigns.

Erling Haaland’s double and Stefan Ortega’s superb save saw Manchester City beat Tottenham 2-0 to ensure Pep Guardiola’s team head into the final day of the season leading the Premier League.

Haaland, who had opened the scoring with a tap-in in the 51st minute, slammed in a stoppage-time penalty to send the travelling City supporters into delirium at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Tuesday.

That spot-kick followed a wonderful save from substitute goalkeeper Ortega at the other end, who denied Son Heung-min a would-be equaliser on a bizarre night where the home support never truly managed to get fully behind their side, given what was at stake for their rivals Arsenal.

But with Haaland’s double, City – now on 88 points, two clear of Arsenal – are on the cusp of an unprecedented fourth straight Premier League title, while Spurs’ Champions League hopes are over.

Ederson was forced into action after just six minutes as Bentancur got on the end of Brennan Johnson’s cutback, with his strike from just outside the penalty area was tipped over by City’s goalkeeper.

The best chance of the half fell to Foden, who – in the 16th minute – latched onto a dismal clearance from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, but his close-range volley was superbly kept out by Vicario.

It took City less than two minutes to test Vicario once again after the break as he made an excellent diving save to palm away Kevin De Bruyne’s curling effort from the edge of the box.

But Vicario had no chance four minutes later – Haaland tapping into an empty net after latching onto De Bruyn’s drilled delivery.

Ederson had to be taken off after a nasty clash with Cristian Romero, and while City’s goalkeeper was frustrated, his stand-in Ortega turned in a fantastic cameo.

Having twice denied Dejan Kulusevski from close range, Ortega then stood up brilliantly when one-on-one with Son.

It is a save that might just win City the league – Haaland subsequently making sure of the points after Jeremy Doku was brought down by Pedro Porro, leaving the reigning champions, who face West Ham on Sunday, on the brink of glory again.

De Bruyne provides the spark but Ortega the unlikely hero

When City needed the breakthrough, it was no surprise to see De Bruyne provide it. The Belgian has now provided 10+ assists, the joint-most of any player in Premier League’s history, along with Cesc Fabregas.

De Bruyne has now assisted Haaland 12 times in the Premier League, the most from one player to another in the competition in the last two seasons.

Haaland, meanwhile, is the first City player to score a brace away to Spurs in the Premier League since Edin Dzeko in August 2011.

Yet for the efforts of the attackers, it was Ortega who came up huge with those massive stops, with that save from Son likely to go down in City folklore.

Spurs’ defensive woes continue

City only managed two shots in the opening 45 minutes – only against Aston Villa in December (two) have they had as few shots in the first half of a Premier League game this season.

Yet the hosts eventually came undone, meaning Ange Postecoglou’s team have conceded in each of their last 10 games in the Premier League, their longest run without a clean sheet in the competition since September-December 2019 (also 10).

After failing to secure the three points needed, Tottenham are now unable to catch Villa in fourth place, meaning Unai Emery’s team clinch the final Champions League spot. 

Manchester City's success is "not boring" or purely determined by financial reasons, head coach Pep Guardiola insists.

The Citizens are on the hunt for an unprecedented fourth successive Premier League title, and could become the first team to win back-to-back doubles should they also prevail in the FA Cup final later this month. 

Once again, City appear to be hitting form at just the right time, winning each of their last four matches by an aggregate scoreline of 15-1.

Guardiola's side are a point behind leaders Arsenal heading into the final week of the campaign, and will leapfrog the Gunners should they win their game in hand against Tottenham.

But the Spaniard rejected the claim City's success is becoming too predictable - or that it is down to the money they have spent - believing other teams would have lifted more silverware than his side had that been the case.

"It's not boring," he said. "It's difficult. Before, it was the money. For that reason, Manchester United should have won all the titles, Chelsea - all the titles, Arsenal - all the titles.

"They spent as much money in the last five years as us. They should be there. They are not there.

"For that reason, Girona shouldn’t be in the Champions League [next season] and Leicester should win the Premier League."

City will take a giant step towards that fourth straight Premier League crown with victory at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Tuesday.

While Guardiola admits the achievement was not at the forefront of his squad's intentions at the beginning of the campaign, he is well aware of it's significance.

"In the beginning of the season, we didn't think about it," he added. "But then we were in February, March and April, we were still there [in the title race]. After that, it ignites something in all our heads.

"No team has done it. That shows how hard it is. Liverpool in the 1980s, Alex Ferguson's [Manchester] United in the 1990s. Chelsea with [Roman] Abramovich and Jose [Mourinho], Arsenal with [Arsene] Wenger didn't do it."

Pep Guardiola knows Manchester City have no choice but to end their Premier League hoodoo at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on Tuesday, saying anything but a win will hand Arsenal the title.

Following Arsenal's 1-0 win at Manchester United on Sunday, City are one point behind the Gunners at the summit with a game in hand.

Arsenal are now in the unenviable position of needing a favour from their North London rivals, as a City win will ensure they enter this weekend's final set of fixtures with the title race in their hands.  

However, City have lost on all four of their visits to the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium in the Premier League without scoring, though they did manage a 1-0 FA Cup win there in January.

Only Birmingham City (seven at Old Trafford) have played more Premier League games at a specific stadium without finding the net.

Asked about the importance of ending that record, Guardiola said: "It's obvious, I would say. We have just one option, win the game. We will go from there.

"We played really well there many times but weren't able to score or win games. 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."

Some Tottenham fans have expressed unease about the prospect of helping their old enemies end their 20-year wait to be crowned champions of England, but Spurs boss Ange Postecoglou has hit out at those questioning his team's motivation.

"What do you think we're going to do as a team? Like any team on this planet, aren't we just going to try and win? It's a simple, basic premise," Postecoglou said. 

"Now how that makes people feel, I'm not really fussed. I don't really care."

Touching on City's hunt for an unprecedented fourth straight English top-flight title, he added: "Sometimes people think once you win it once it becomes easier, but it becomes harder.

"It's a testament not just to Pep but the whole organisation and how they want to achieve success."

PLAYERS TO WATCH 

Tottenham – Dejan Kulusevski 

Kulsevski has been directly involved in five goals in his four Premier League games against City, more than he has versus any other opponent in the competition (three goals, two assists).

The Swede scored a last-minute equaliser as the sides played out a thrilling 3-3 draw in December's reverse fixture, but he has failed to net in any of his last 11 Premier League matches.

Manchester City – Phil Foden

Foden and Jack Grealish both scored in City's reverse fixture against Spurs. The only previous players to score home and away against Tottenham in a Premier League season for the Citizens are Sergio Aguero (2013-14 and 2014-15), Ilkay Gundogan (2017-18) and Raheem Sterling (2017-18).

Foden netted his 25th goal of the campaign across all competitions in City's 4-0 rout of Fulham on Saturday, and the Player of the Season candidate will play a key role here.

MATCH PREDICTION – MANCHESTER CITY WIN

Arsenal supporters may not feel great about having to cheer on their old rivals, but history suggests Tottenham have a chance of providing a twist in the title race – regardless of how their own fans feel about that prospect.

Indeed, City have lost more Premier League games against Tottenham under Guardiola (six), than they have against any other side.

The champions, however, are in ominous form, going unbeaten through their last 21 Premier League matches (17 wins, four draws). 

Only once have they enjoyed a longer run in the competition, going 30 without losing between April 2017 and January 2018.

They have also won their last four away league games, the last three of them by an aggregate score of 10-0. Only once in their league history have they won four in a row on the road without conceding, doing so as a second-tier club between March and April 1903.

Regardless of their terrible record on this ground, it is difficult to see the champions slipping up.

OPTA WIN PROBABILITY

Tottenham – 20.1%

Manchester City – 54.8%

Draw – 25.1%

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