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. 

Aston Villa will play in Europe's top continental competition for the first time in 41 years next season after qualifying for the Champions League.

Tottenham's 2-0 defeat to Manchester City on Tuesday sealed Villa's fourth-place finish in the Premier League.

Unai Emery's side have not played in UEFA's premier club competition since the 1982-83 season, when they suffered quarter-final elimination to Juventus in the European Cup.

Villa were knocked out of the Europa Conference League in the semi-finals this term by Olympiacos, but will now have their eyes on Europe's top prize in the Champions League next campaign.

Bruno Fernandes is reportedly drawing interest from Bayern Munich and Saudi Arabian clubs but Erik ten Hag remains confident the midfielder will stay at Manchester United.

The Portugal international, who joined the Red Devils from Sporting in January 2020, is said to be attracting attention from numerous clubs in the Saudi Pro League.

Bundesliga giants Bayern are also reportedly weighing up their options in attempting to sign Fernandes, though under-fire Ten Hag expects him to remain at Old Trafford.

When pressed at Tuesday's press conference on Fernandes' future, Ten Hag responded: "It is the same question as last week. So I answered.

"The same answer. Now in all the years he was, he was a tremendously important player for Manchester United and creating the most chances across the Premier League.

"So many assists, so many goals. It's clear he's a very important player for us."

Indeed, since his debut against Wolves on February 1, 2020, Fernandes leads United for chances created (644), goals (79) and assists (63) across all competitions.

In the same period, the 29-year-old also leads the way among Premier League players overall in chances created, ahead of Kevin De Bruyne (519), Trent Alexander-Arnold (424) and Pascal Gross (388).

Though Ten Hag is keen to keep Fernandes in Manchester, Raphael Varane has announced his intentions to leave the Red Devils at the end of the current season.

Casemiro is also said to be of interest in Saudi Arabia, where clubs are reportedly targeting moves for the likes of Mohamed Salah, De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku.

Erik ten Hag says Lisandro Martinez could make his first Manchester United appearance since March when the Red Devils host Newcastle United on Wednesday.

Having made just 11 appearances during an injury-hit season, the Argentina international is set to return from a calf problem that has kept him sidelined since his most recent outing in the draw at Brentford six weeks ago. 

Although, the game comes too soon for fellow defender Raphael Varane, who announced he will leave the club at the end of the season, but Ten Hag hopes the France international can feature again before he departs Old Trafford.

The Dutchman said of Martinez: "I think he will return [against Newcastle]. He had some [training] sessions and, if everything is okay, he will be involved.

"We are definitely planning [for Varane to play] for the last games. Not tomorrow, but we hope for Sunday and then, of course, for the last game [against Manchester City in the FA Cup final on May 25]."

With two games remaining, the Red Devils are in eighth place and three points adrift of Newcastle in sixth, while the Magpies boast a far superior goal difference.

And Ten Hag underlined the necessity to achieve a positive result to keep his side’s European qualification hopes via league position alive.  

"It's a very important game," he said. "We have to do everything to get the win; we have to fight hard for it."

Meanwhile, Newcastle will take a huge stride towards securing European football for a second successive season with a win at Old Trafford.

And Eddie Howe, who revealed the Magpies are waiting on the fitness of Alexander Isak and Callum Wilson, is eager to ensure his players arrive there in the best shape possible. 

"It is a massive fixture. We are under no illusions of the magnitude of this game," he said.

"We must make sure our players go to Manchester United in really good spirits, confident and prepared.

"We find ourselves in this position, and it is where we deserve to be. We will be hoping to finish off these two games strongly. Our motivation is to qualify for Europe."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Manchester United – Bruno Fernandes

In Fernandes’ absence, the Red Devils have lost both of their last two Premier League games.

Since the Portugal international made his debut in the competition, they have won 40 per cent of their league games and averaged 1.3 points-per-game when he has not started; compared to a 53 per cent win rate and 1.8 points-per-game when he has been in their starting XI.

Newcastle United – Sean Longstaff

Following his strike against Brighton and Hove Albion last weekend, Longstaff has scored in successive Premier League appearances for the first time, with 60 per cent of his goals in the competition coming this season (six out of 10).

Newcastle have never lost a Premier League match in which the midfielder has found the net (winning six, drawing three).

MATCH PREDICTION: DRAW

Man United have lost just one of their 28 Premier League home games against Newcastle (winning 18, drawing nine), going down 1-0 in December 2013.

Meanwhile, the Red Devils have only lost their final home league game in one of the last 16 seasons (winning 11, drawing four), suffering a 2-0 defeat against Cardiff City in 2018-19.

They are also unbeaten in their last 14 midweek (Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday) home games in the Premier League (winning 11, drawing three). Liverpool were the last visiting side to win at Old Trafford in midweek in the competition, courtesy of their 4-2 triumph in May 2021.

Having already beaten the Red Devils twice in all competitions this season, Newcastle are aiming to become the first team to beat the Red Devils three times in a single season since Chelsea in 2012-13.

The Blues were also the last side to beat them twice away from home in the same campaign (2004-05).

Although, Eddie Howe has never won a Premier League match away in Manchester against United or City in 14 attempts (drawing two, losing 12). Only Steve Bruce has managed more away games in Manchester in the competition without success (26).

OPTA WIN PROBABILITY

Manchester United: 42.9%
Newcastle United: 29.3%
Draw: 27.8%

Mauricio Pochettino believes it would be "amazing" for Chelsea to secure European qualification ahead of their trip to Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday.

After replacing Graham Potter in the Stamford Bridge dugout last July, the Argentine oversaw just three wins from his first 10 Premier League games in charge of the Blues this season.

However, his side are finishing the campaign strongly and occupy seventh place – level on points with sixth-place Newcastle United and six behind Tottenham in fifth with two games remaining.

"The team is doing well, in the second part of the season – in the last 26 or 27 games," Pochettino told reporters. 

"If we can compete well in the last two games then there is a possibility to get into Europe, which would be amazing for us.

"If we are able to finish well and get into Europe, for sure, we can start the next season with hope to be in a better position than we were in this season."

Meanwhile, 10th-place Brighton have struggled for form in recent times, winning just one of their last eight league games – albeit that victory came against Champions League-chasing Aston Villa last time out on home soil.

Nevertheless, head coach Roberto De Zerbi is targeting a third successive top-half finish in the English top flight.

"I want us to finish in the top 10," he said during his pre-match press conference. "It’s important because, after Sunday, we go on holiday. When we’re on holiday, if we have no points [from the last two games], it will be a problem for me."

De Zerbi also paid tribute to the departing Adam Lallana, who will leave the Seagulls when his contract expires at the end of this season after four years with the club.

"I've been lucky to work with him because he is an honest guy, a top man," the Italian added. "I have learned a lot from him because he loves football."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Brighton and Hove Albion – Joao Pedro

Scoring the match winner against Aston Villa last time out at the American Express Stadium, Pedro became the first Brighton player to bag 20 goals in a single season since Glenn Murray in 2016-17 (23).

The Brazilian has now been on target five times in the Seagulls’ last five Premier League outings on home soil.

Chelsea – Nicolas Jackson

The Senegal striker has been directly involved in five goals in his last three Premier League appearances for Chelsea (four goals, one assist), as many as in his previous 11 such games (three goals, two assists). 

With 14 league goals already this season – none of which have been penalties – he could be the first Blues player to score 15 non-penalty goals in a Premier League campaign since Tammy Abraham in 2019-20.

MATCH PREDICTION: CHELSEA

Chelsea have won 29 points in the Premier League in 2024, with only the top three clubs – Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool – collecting more since the turn of the year. 

The Blues have lost just one of their last 13 league games (won seven, drawn five), and are aiming to win four in a row for the first time since October 2022.

Meanwhile, Brighton have now failed to score more than once in each of their last 11 Premier League outings, their longest such run in the competition.

OPTA WIN PROBABILITY

Brighton and Hove Albion: 33.8%
Chelsea: 37.3%
Draw: 28.9%

Mauricio Pochettino admits it would be "amazing" for Chelsea to secure European qualification ahead of their trip to Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday.

After replacing Graham Potter in the Stamford Bridge dugout last July, the Argentine oversaw just three wins from his first 10 Premier League games in charge of the Blues this season.

However, his side are finishing the campaign strongly and occupy seventh place – level on points with sixth-place Newcastle United and six behind Tottenham in fifth with two games remaining.

"The team is doing well, in the second part of the season – in the last 26 or 27 games," Pochettino told reporters. 

"If we can compete well in the last two games then there is a possibility to get into Europe, which would be amazing for us.

"If we are able to finish well and get into Europe, for sure, we can start the next season with hope to be in a better position than we were in this season."

Meanwhile, 10th-place Brighton have struggled for form in recent times, winning just one of their last eight league games – albeit that victory came against Champions League-chasing Aston Villa last time out on home soil.

Nevertheless, head coach Roberto De Zerbi is targeting a third successive top-half finish in the English top flight.

"I want us to finish in the top 10," he said during his pre-match press conference. "It’s important because, after Sunday, we go on holiday. When we’re on holiday, if we have no points [from the last two games], it will be a problem for me."

De Zerbi also paid tribute to the departing Adam Lallana, who will leave the Seagulls when his contract expires at the end of this season after four years with the club.

"I've been lucky to work with him because he is an honest guy, a top man," the Italian added. "I have learned a lot from him because he loves football."

PLAYERS TO WATCH

Brighton and Hove Albion – Joao Pedro

Scoring the match winner against Aston Villa last time out at the American Express Stadium, Pedro became the first Brighton player to bag 20 goals in a single season since Glenn Murray in 2016-17 (23).

The Brazilian has now been on target five times in the Seagulls’ last five Premier League outings on home soil.

Chelsea – Nicolas Jackson

The Senegal striker has been directly involved in five goals in his last three Premier League appearances for Chelsea (four goals, one assist), as many as in his previous 11 such games (three goals, two assists). 

With 14 league goals already this season – none of which have been penalties – he could be the first Blues player to score 15 non-penalty goals in a Premier League campaign since Tammy Abraham in 2019-20.

MATCH PREDICTION: CHELSEA

Chelsea have won 29 points in the Premier League in 2024, with only the top three clubs – Manchester City, Arsenal and Liverpool – collecting more since the turn of the year. 

The Blues have lost just one of their last 13 league games (won seven, drawn five), and are aiming to win four in a row for the first time since October 2022.

Meanwhile, Brighton have now failed to score more than once in each of their last 11 Premier League outings, their longest such run in the competition.

OPTA WIN PROBABILITY

Brighton and Hove Albion: 33.8%
Chelsea: 37.3%
Draw: 28.9%

Raphael Varane will depart Manchester United when his contract expires at the end of this season.

The France defender, who is currently sidelined through injury, is set to leave the Red Devils after three years at Old Trafford.

Varane has made 93 appearances for the club since arriving from Real Madrid in August 2021, scoring two goals, and was part of the side that won the Carabao Cup in 2023.

United occupy eighth place in the Premier League table with two games remaining in what has been a torrid 2023-24 campaign, and are in danger of missing out on European qualification.

Nevertheless, the 31-year-old is confident brighter times lie ahead for the club.

"It's been an amazing few years to play for this special club and wear that shirt," he said in a video posted on his X account.

"The first time I went to Old Trafford as a Man United player, it was insane. The atmosphere was amazing. I fell in love with the club, with the fans. You have to play for Manchester United to understand what it represents.

"It's going to be a special place for me for life. Despite the fact we had a difficult season, I'm very positive for the future. The new owners are coming in with a clear plan and a great strategy."

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."

Jurgen Klopp was lamented his side's late mistake as Liverpool gave up a two-goal lead to draw 3-3 with Aston Villa in the Premier League on Monday.

The Reds were on top after a quick start as Emiliano Martinez gifted them an opener inside the first 61 seconds. Though Youri Tielemans equalised for Villa, Cody Gakpo and Jarell Quansah put Liverpool back in control.

Jhon Duran scored twice late on, netting in the 85th and 88th minutes to deny Klopp’s side three points.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the game, the German admitted that though they could not see out the win, he was proud of his team’s performance.

He said: "It got away from us. We played really good football. We were really good, played a lot of good stuff and caused a lot of problems.

"Before we changed, we gave them too many chances. It was very intense for the boys. They created too much. They were too often in our box, and we made the changes. Then we made a mistake. It happens but in that moment, it opens the door.

"They scored an equaliser, and I don't even know how. The character from the boys tonight was outstanding in our situation. We wanted to win the game. In the moment, when we gave away the 3-2, that was really tricky. That's it, that's the story of the game."

It looked like Quansah’s goal would be the winner for much of the second half, with the young defender heading in his first goal for Liverpool.

"I've been waiting for that moment," he told the BBC. "I don't score too many goals, so when it goes in the back of the net you just saw the emotion come out I guess.

"I just tried to get the best contact on it as I could. I'm thankful it went in.

"The way the crowd celebrated was a surreal moment, definitely one I'll never forget."

Unai Emery has praised "special" Jhon Duran after his late brace secured Aston Villa a point in a thrilling 3-3 draw with Liverpool in the Premier League on Monday.

The Reds looked to be on their way to a 3-1 despite Youri Tielemans’ strike after Cody Gakpo and Jarell Quansah added to Emiliano Martinez’s early own goal.

However, Duran's 79th-minute introduction changed the game as the Colombian scored twice in three minutes to salvage a draw.

Villa needed a win to secure a Champions League spot, but a point keeps their fate in their own hands despite Tottenham having a game in hand against Manchester City on Tuesday.

Emery was full of praise for his forward, acknowledging how important his goals could be by Sunday.

Speaking to Sky Sports, he said: "Jhon Duran is a special player. We have to try and help him. He is a good guy, and he needs a team behind him. He is getting our demands better. He was very clinical and today was important for him.

"Today we are celebrating with our supporters, we have to push it and keep working and be consistent. We were consistent all the season. The team was being mature and always consistent in our mind. Inch by inch we did it.

"We are very proud of the season. It is not enough at the moment to get fourth. Even after we scored the two goals, we had chances. We are celebrating the season here with our supporters in Villa Park.

"We are only thinking of us. We will prepare for our match on Sunday, everything is in our hands."

Villa were on a three-game losing run going into the Liverpool contest, and John McGinn highlighted the team’s strong mentality to avoid another defeat.

"It's a brilliant effort towards the end. We got a bit of luck. It's been a tough few weeks with lads coming back and playing through the pain barrier. This place got us going," he told Sky Sports after the game.

"There's some of us that have never been close to the Champions League in our life. The manager has a no-excuse mentality. People have written us off and we've floated under the radar. We'll have our Man City tops on tomorrow.

"Big Jhon [Duran] is a bit nuts and is a nightmare to have in your team, but he's got quality. We need to keep his feet on the ground over the next couple of days."

Jhon Duran's dramatic late double earned Aston Villa a thrilling 3-3 draw with Liverpool at Villa Park, but the hosts will still have to wait before they can be sure of sealing a top-four Premier League finish.

Duran came off the bench to score in the 85th and 88th minutes to help Villa avoid what had looked set to be a fourth straight defeat in all competitions.

Emiliano Martinez's own goal gifted Liverpool the lead two minutes in on Monday and Cody Gakpo restored that advantage for the visitors after Youri Tielemans had Unai Emery’s side level.

It looked like Jarell Quansah's first goal for the Reds early in the second half had sealed the victory, but Duran’s late intervention ensured Villa emerged from the game with a valuable point.

Villa remain in fourth place, now five points clear of Tottenham, their rivals for a Champions League spot. Spurs have a game in hand but must beat title-chasing Manchester City on Tuesday to take the battle to the final day. Liverpool stay third on 79 points.

Emery’s men found themselves behind just 61 seconds into the game with a moment to forget for Martinez as he failed to hold onto Harvey Elliott’s cross, letting it roll over the line.

Despite Liverpool’s bright start, Villa equalised against the run of play – Ollie Watkins pulled it back to Tielemans, who drilled a first-time shot into the bottom-left corner.

Gakpo restored the Reds’ lead in the 23rd minute, meeting Joe Gomez’s low cross to fire into an empty net, with the on-field decision confirmed after a VAR review for an offside in the build-up.

Diego Carlos should have dragged Villa level again before the break, but with an open net to aim for at close range, he could only guide his shot wide of the far post.

Liverpool started the second half brightly, with Quansah netting his first goal for the club with a towering, unmarked header into the top-left corner before offside decisions denied both sides more goals.

Watkins thought he had scored his 20th Premier League goal of the season when he guided it past Alisson, but it was disallowed following a VAR review as Leon Bailey set off too early in the build-up.

Minutes later, Elliott skipped in front of Mohamed Salah to poke Luis Diaz’s cross past a stranded Martinez, but the flag was up against the Colombian.

Duran’s introduction flipped the momentum back in Villa’s favour, as the substitute scored twice in three minutes to salvage a draw – he drilled the first into the bottom-corner after dispossessing Alexis Mac Allister before perhaps fortuitously flicking Moussa Diaby’s pass over Alisson and into the net.

Home comforts for Villa

Villa knew a win here would confirm fourth spot and Champions League football, and while they did not quite achieve that, this was a small and significant step towards securing it.

Though they were not helped by Martinez's mistake in the second minute, with the goalkeeper scoring the earliest own goal since Antolin Alcaraz (54 seconds) for Everton against Southampton in April 2014, Villa kept fighting to get a result.

The Villans are now unbeaten in their final home game of the season in each of the last five campaigns since their promotion back to the top-flight in 2019, winning three and drawing two. They have Duran to thank for that record extending, and they will now watch Spurs’ match against City with great interest.

Quick starts boost Reds

In Jurgen Klopp's penultimate game in charge of Liverpool, his side showed signs of their free-scoring best once more.

Quansah's header was the 140th goal across all competitions for Liverpool this season - it is their second-highest scoring campaign in the club's history after 2021-22 (147).

They made bright starts to both halves and were rewarded with goals inside the opening three minutes each time to put themselves in control.

However, another defensive lapse at the back, similar to the one they had against Tottenham, ultimately cost them two points. The Reds finish their season at home to Wolves on Sunday.

David Beckham believes Manchester United’s issues have lasted "too long" since Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013.

The Red Devils have won just four major trophies since Ferguson’s departure, with their most recent – an EFL Cup win last season – ending a six-year wait for silverware.

United have not won a Premier League title since the Scot’s final season in charge, with six managers failing to reclaim the top-flight crown since then.

This season, Erik ten Hag’s side are at risk of recording their lowest league finish and points tally, as they sit eighth on 54 points with two games remaining.

Beckham, who won 13 trophies, including six Premier League titles and the Champions League, told The Athletic: "I think it has been a difficult time over the last five or ten years, but it was always going to be when the boss left the club.

"It wasn’t just that, we lost players like Ryan Giggs, Roy Keane and Gary Neville, all of these players that had been at United for so long; you lose part of that, and you lose part of the club.

"So it was always going to be a difficult time. But we’d like it to change pretty quickly because I think it’s gone on for too long now."

United have lost 19 games in all competitions this season, their most since 1977-78 (also 19), with nine of those coming at Old Trafford – their joint-most at home in a season and the first time it has happened in the Premier League.

Their 1-0 defeat to Arsenal on Sunday marked the first time they had conceded in 10 successive games in all competitions since October 2021, while the 82 goals they have let in this season is their most since 1970-71 (also 82).

Beckham was speaking at the premiere of 99, the Amazon Prime documentary covering United’s iconic treble-winning season 25 years ago.

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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