It was a deserved victory against the last team to beat us, but Spurs might have taken gone in front when Harry Kane cracked the post with a 20-yard free-kick, before Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg’s clumsy challenge on Gundogan allowed Rodrigo to convert the first penalty of his club career.
Hugo Lloris got a hand to it but was unable to keep it out and he allowed Gundogan’s toe poke to squirm under his body as the midfielder added a second four minutes after the break following good combination play with Raheem Sterling.
The in-form midfielder all but wrapped up the three points shortly after the hour mark and it came from an unlikely source in Ederson.
Spotting Gundogan’s forward run, the goalkeeper’s long punt evaded Davinson Sanchez, who was outmuscled and left on the seat of his pants before City’s No.8 fired into the bottom corner to score his 11th goal in his last 12 Premier League games.
Jose Mourinho’s side offered little in attack, though Gareth Bale’s jinking run and shot forced a good save from Ederson, whilst Sterling would have added gloss to the scoreline in the closing minutes but for Lloris’ outstretched leg.
Guardiola had no complaints about Spurs’ 2-0 victory in November but said he wanted to see more from his players this time out and he certainly got it.
Set-pieces aside, goalmouth action was at a premium in the first half, but it was City who were on the front foot.
The home side’s superiority was clear to see as we extended our unbeaten run to 23 matches and if there was a negative, it was the sight of the man of the match holding his groin as he was substituted in the 69th minute.
DEFENDING TO WIN
In Kane and Heung-Min Son, Spurs boast one of the deadliest attacking duos in the country, but they did little to trouble City’s much lauded defence as we equalled the club record of seven consecutive home clean sheets in all competitions, which was originally achieved between December 1946 and March 1947.
The back four have rightly earned plaudits this season, but Guardiola says we defend as a team and it was particularly evident in this performance.
City’s control of possession reduced Spurs’ attacking threat and when chances did present themselves, the back five thwarted any danger.
John Stones intercepted an Eric Lamela pass before Son could run clear in the first half and made a good block from Tanguy Ndombele’s effort following his surging run through midfield.
Ederson was rarely troubled and when he was called into action by Ndombele, Stones stuck out a leg to take the pace off the strike and the Brazilian saved comfortably, whilst Bale’s late drive, though fierce, was too close to the goalkeeper to seriously trouble him.
PEP GUARDIOLA - WE HAVE TO BE PATIENT
"Well deserved, they hit the post and that can turn the game but the way we wanted to play was there. Tottenham have special quality, we have played well against them in the past and lost 2-0.
"They don't need anything to create chances. It is the quality and the approach of their manager. We have a special way to play and we will continue, you have to be patient, patient. Calm."