MONACO – Manchester City heads to Tottenham in the English Premier League on Sunday, seeking to build on a promising start and reduce the chances of its opponent challenging for the top four.
While big-spending City has won its two opening matches to share the lead with defending champion Manchester United and Wolverhampton Wanderers, Spurs lost their only game so far and could be seven points behind the Champions League qualifying spots by the end of the weekend.
Having broken the club's 35-year streak without a trophy with last season's FA Cup, City manager Roberto Mancini expects to challenge for the Premier League, Champions League, cup and League Cup this season. Tottenham would be happy to improve upon last season's fourth-place finish by a single position.
''Given how we've built the squad over the last three years, we feel we can have a tilt at four competitions,'' City football administrator Brian Marwood said. ''Speaking to Roberto during the summer and talking about the players he wanted to bring in, it was an ambition of his to really compete for four trophies and that's how we start.
''The football club is making history. It's the first time it's ever competed at this level and it's such an exciting time for everyone connected with the club.''
City is likely to give Samir Nasri his debut against Tottenham, against whom he scored four goals in three games for Arsenal last season. But Spurs will be unable to do likewise with Emmanuel Adebayor after signing him on loan because league rules prohibit him from playing against his parent club.
Abebayor scored eight goals against Tottenham during his 3 1/2 years with fierce local rival Arsenal, but showed he no longer had any loyalty toward his old club when he ran the length of the field to celebrate a goal against the Gunners for City in September 2009.
With Sandro, Luka Modric and Steven Pienaar injured, Tottenham could field Yago Falque after signing the Spanish midfielder on loan for the season from Juventus. Spurs are also trying to sign Joe Cole from Liverpool, where the former England midfielder has endured a miserable year since leaving Chelsea.
''We're working hard, the chairman's on a couple of transfers at the moment,'' Redknapp said. ''I love Joe. He's a good a player and I still think he's a kid we could get going again.''
Also on Sunday, Manchester United hosts Arsenal.
Scotland midfielder Darren Fletcher could make his first appearance of the season for United after proving his recovery from the virus he suffered in March with a 90-minute reserve appearance on Thursday.
Rio Ferdinand and Antonio Valencia could return from injury to bolster the defending champions, but Nemanja Vidic and Rafael da Silva are out of the defense - leaving Phil Jones and Chris Smalling in contention to play again.
Also, West Brom hosts Stoke and Fulham is at Newcastle.
On Saturday, it's Aston Villa vs. Wolverhampton Wanderers, Blackburn vs. Everton, Chelsea vs. Norwich, Liverpool vs. Bolton, Swansea vs. Sunderland and Wigan vs. Queens Park Rangers.
Wolves are tied on six points with United and City after winning their opening two matches. Steve Bull was still leading Wolves' attack when the club last won its opening two league fixtures - and that was in the second tier.