It was a match that fairly fizzled and crackled from the off , swung one way then the other throughout with Son-heung Min scoring at both ends inside the first nine minutes.
City then edged ahead through Phil Foden, but Giovani Lo Celso then equalised with 20 minutes top go.
Sub Jack Grealish looked to have won the points for the Blues on 81 minutes but Dejan Kulusevski had the last word on 90 minutes, making it 3-3 with a header that skimmed in off the underside of the crossbar.
To say it was a breathless opening few minutes is an understatement.
The Spurs players - pumped up and full of energy - raced around the pitch like men possessed with their high press.
Everything they were doing was at breakneck speed and when a City corner was cleared, Jeremy Doku was left as the last man, Son-Heung Min nicked the ball away as he headed towards the box then drilled a low shot under Ederson to put the visitors ahead on six minutes.
The Blues levelled almost immediately.
That was just a snapshot of what was to come in a game that lived up to its pre-match billing.
City should have been ahead on 13 minutes as Spurs lost possession attempting to play out from the back and the ball was worked to Haaland around the penalty spot – a goal looked inevitable, but the Norwegian put his shot wide of the post.
Both teams exchanged blows for the next 20 minutes, largely dominated by City but occasionally punctuated by a rapierlike Spurs counter-attack.
The Blues came within a coat of paint of going ahead on 30 minutes as Jeremy Doku cut inside the box before curling a shot against the crossbar and post.
The buzz around the Etihad had barely died down when City did finally go in front a couple of minutes later.
It was a wonderfully worked move that started with Bernardo winning possession, Haaland finding Doku, he fed Alvarez in the box and the Argentine’s clever lay-off gave Phil Foden time to calmly slot home from six yards.
Alvarez then hit the foot of the Spurs post as City broke forward, but despite there being a number of chances at either end in the time that remained, the Blues went into the break with a 2-1 advantage.
Within seconds of the restart, a delightful curling shot from the outside of Bernardo’s foot was clawed away by Spurs keeper Vicario.
Though City continued to boss proceedings, Spurs continued to carry a dangerous threat on the break and on 70 minutes, the visitors levelled the scores.
Giovani Lo Celso cut inside on the edge of the City box before firing a precise low drive into the bottom left corner.
City were almost caught out again a minute later as Lo Celso’s thunderous half-volley was deflected past the post by the boot of Grealish.
That seemed to shake the Blues to the core, and spurred on by the lively Etihad crowd, the pressure began to crank up again on the visitors.
A sustained spell of attacks ended when Rodrigo stole possession outside the box, fed Haaland to his right and our prolific No.9’s cross into the box was swept hom by Grealish.
It looked as though that might be enough to seal the points, but Tottenham refused to give in and as the clocked ticked to 90 minutes, Brennan Johnson’s cross from the left was headed home by Dejan Kulusevski to make it 3-3.
There was still time for one more controversial moment as, deep into added time, Haaland was fouled but managed to play a pass that sent Grealish clear on goal - only for referee Simon Hooper to call play back after seeming to have initially waved play on.
That sparked a furious reaction from the City players and fans who felt any advantage had been taken away with the opportunity to win the game
Subs: Ortega Moreno, Phillips, Stones, Gómez, Bobb
TOTTENHAM: Vicario, Porro, Royal, Davies, Udogie, Bissouma (Richarlison 87) Lo Celso (Skipp 79), Kulusevski, Johnson (Donley 90+6), Son (c), Bryan (Højbjerg 46)
Subs: Forster, Austin, Dorrington, Santiago, Veliz
What it means…
City drop to third in the Premier League table, three points behind leaders Arsenal and a point behind second-placed Liverpool.
It’s the Blues’ third successive draw in the Premier League following ties with Chelsea and Liverpool.
Blues still on track - but shipping goals
City conceded just 10 goals in our first 14 games this season in all competitions - but have now conceded 10 in the last four games.
Four at Chelsea, one against Liverpool, two against RB Leipzig and three more today - and that will be a concern to Pep Guardiola.
The quality of opposition cannot be underestimated, but the Blues are well aware that title challenges are built on solid foundations.
That said, with 12 points dropped in the last eight games, City are still third and just three points adrift of the summit.
Man of the Match
Julian Alvarez worked tirelessly throughout, pressing high, winning the ball and also played a huge role in the first two City goals - as well as hitting the post.
“That’s football sometimes. In any sport it is about statistics, and when a team has better statistics, 10 times out of 10 they win. In football this is not the case.
“Last week the same happened to Spurs. They were the better team against Aston Villa but they lost. So football can be like this sometimes.
“To score four at Stamford Bridge and draw, to be better against Liverpool and draw, and today we were also not able to win. We need to forget this and move on to the next one and continue.”
RUBEN DIAS REACTION
“It’s a feeling of frustration, very similar to the Liverpool game. A game I would say we dominated the most part of it and in the end the draw was what we could get.
“Overall I can’t say I’m not happy with the performance of the team. Everyone was on it. The team was very aggressive. We were very sharp, we created the chances.
“Unfortunately we didn’t take the three points but I think it’ll be part of the consistency of being the team we are to keep moving forwards even though we didn’t get the three points today.”
City take on Aston Villa on Wednesday evening for a Premier League top four clash with Unai Emery’s side.
The match takes place at Villa Park, kick off is 20:15 (UK)
Next weekend, the Blues travel again - this time to face Luton Town in our first trip to Kenilworth Road for 25 years.
The game is scheduled for Sunday, 10 December and kicks-off at 14:00 (UK).
Stats and milestones
City have lost just two of our last 14 Premier League home games against Tottenham (W9 D3)
City have drawn the last three games - the first time that has happened since April 2017 during Pep Guardiola’s first season in charge.
Dejan Kulusevski has scored for Tottenham away at City in each of the last three seasons. The only player in Premier League history to score away against the reigning champions in three consecutive campaigns is Danny Murphy, who did so in four between 2000-01 and 2003-04.
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