Former Arsenal captain Per Mertesacker believes Tottenham Hotspur’s Champions League journey will come to an end tonight when they host Manchester City in the quarter-final second leg, while speaking to Goal.
Spurs will play one of the most important games in their European history on Wednesday when they travel to the Etihad. Mauricio Pochettino’s side have a one goal lead from the first leg, Heung Min Son scoring with a typically inspired solo effort.
But Pep Guardiola’s City are expected to come roaring out of the traps on home soil and are arguably still favourites to qualify for the semi-finals, especially as Spurs have lost their talisman and top scorer Harry Kane to injury.
Mertesacker, who is now the head of Arsenal’s academy, believes the Gunners’ North London neighbours are set to bow out at the Etihad.
"Does Pep still know how to succeed in the Champions League? Of course he does and City will progress," he told Goal.
"When City play the second leg at home and the team have the feeling they have to make up for something, that's when they play best.
"Plus, Spurs always had big problems in Manchester and got some heavy defeats. I don't expect that now, but they will surely miss Harry Kane.
“City have the big goal to win the Champions League and I don't think Tottenham will spoil that. I actually believe the final will be Man City vs Barcelona."
If Manchester City do progress tonight, this intriguing Champions League campaign has just thrown up a very interesting little subplot.
Guardiola will reunite against his protégé Erik Ten Hag, who honed his managerial trade under the Spaniard at Bayern Munich, in a potential meeting with this scintillating young Ajax side.