It would be a remarkable feat to go 38 games unbeaten - so many factors all need to come together over an entire season - but at present Manchester City's opponents may feel they can cut off one threat only to be brought down by another.
Spurs followed up last weekend's 5-1 thrashing of Stoke City with a 2-0 defeat of Brighton and Hove Albion on Wednesday.
Tottenham tumbled down to seventh behind Liverpool, who are at Bournemouth on Sunday, on goal difference.
City could even afford to squander a penalty, Jesus driving the ball against the left-hand post and Sterling putting yet another shot over an open goal after Jan Vertonghen had caught De Bruyne.
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Play will also be extended for an extra 30 minutes to accommodate the additional eight overs. The medical committee will make a decision along with the convenor of selectors.
Spurs will take solace from the fact that three of City's first-choice defenders are missing in action due to injury, but Mauricio Pochettino's men have problems of their own at the back with two key players missing (Toby Alderweireld and Davinson Sanchez) and they have suffered of late as a result.
Germany global Ilkay Gundogan has been included in City's squad but is expected to start today's encounter on the bench.
In the standout fixture of matchweek 18, Manchester City host Tottenham at the Etihad hoping to make it five wins out of five against their big six rivals (or six out of six against their big seven rivals, depending on how you feel about Burnley).
Tottenham Hotspur visit the Etihad on Saturday afternoon, and this is a game we really should look forward to. "The better team won".
Chelsea have won eight of their last 10 games, but like Arsenal who beat Newcastle with a Mesut Ozil goal, are realistically playing for a top-four position unless City suffer a new year collapse of dramatic proportions. "Some people are forgetting this run because there is a team that is winning every game". Obviously City are doing very well, that's why they are first in the table.
De Bruyne's hurtful passing repeatedly tore holes in the Spurs defence and Guardiola said that ability on the ball, allied to his exemplary work-rate, made him a figurehead for the club's young players.
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