In any other season, Spurs’ ascent towards the Barclays Premier League summit would have been the standout story of the season.
With just a third of the campaign remaining, Tottenham are in second behind Leicester City in a league table that few, if anybody, would have envisaged back in August.
Mauricio Pochettino’s side have largely flown under the radar but are in ominous form ahead of their Sunday afternoon clash at the Etihad.
Bacary Sagna has been eying the North Londoners’ progress with interest and believes that they are genuine contenders for the Premier League crown.
On a day where Leicester take on Arsenal in the early game, Bacary believes that it could prove to be a pivotal afternoon in this ever-unpredictable title race.
“We face a tough opponent and it’s a big day for all of us,” Sagna said.
“I think that we can come back by winning the game but we have to really focus on our game and not think about whatever is going to happen in the other game. We have to give a good performance and we have to be strong.
“Spurs have been playing very well. I think they have the best goal difference and are scoring a lot of goals without conceding.
“They have quality players so they are a serious team to take.”
City will be aiming to give a response following the soul-sapping 3-1 defeat to Leicester last time out.
Although the squad has been decimated by injuries for long stretches of the season, Bacary won’t use that as an excuse and he believes that the Blues will show their resolve and give a positive reaction against Spurs.
Sagna said: “We are ready to bounce back from what happened last week. It was a massive disappointment because first of all we didn’t get any points because we lost against a top team and also because we didn’t go back to the top which we could have done.
“We have to keep positive and of course think about the game this weekend against Tottenham. It’s going to be another massive, massive game. Leicester will face Arsenal so we know we can make things happen.
“Whoever starts in that team is ready to fight so I am not worried. I think this is definitely the strongest team that I have been a part of because we have top players in every single position and the desire to win the league.”
Manuel Pellegrini will hope to welcome back the skipper Vincent Kompany for this game after the Belgian’s two-month lay-off.
Sagna has described the captain’s potential return as a “massive boost” as the title run-in looms large.
Sagna added: “He is our captain so it’s always nice to see him back. He has a strong character. It’s really important when he plays because he can talk out from the back.
“He is a true leader and I think he’s quite powerful both physically and mentally. He’s proved it in the past and I think he’s coming back at the right time. He has a strong voice!
“It’s a massive boost.”