Frenchman makes his debut for the Eastlands club while the Croatian midfielder plays his first game of the season for Spurs, with Ledley King and William Gallas still sidelined
There has been intense speculation surrounding the future of the Croatian midfielder, who has been heavily linked with a move to Chelsea.
Harry Redknapp had chosen not to field the creative midfielder against Manchester United as he was unsettled at the north London club.
Goal.com has since exclusively revealed that Spurs would even reject a £40 million bid from the Blues, and Modric starts his first league game of the season.
Nasri, meanwhile, made a move from Arsenal to Eastlands for a fee reported to be in the region of £22 million, and makes his competitive debut straight away.
New Spurs arrival Emmanuel Adebayor is ineligible to play in this fixture as the terms of his loan move forbid him from featuring against his parent club. Another new arrival, Yago Falque - on loan from Juventus - did not make the squad. William Gallas and Ledley King are both sidelined for this encounter with injuries.
James Milner put in a strong performance in the 3-2 victory over Bolton Wanderers, but has been relegated to the bench due to Nasri's arrival.
Meanwhile, Nigel de Jong is sidelined with a foot injury picked up during the club's first league game of the season against Swansea City.
Tottenham: Friedel; Corluka, Dawson, Kaboul, Assou-Ekotto; Lennon, Kranjcar, Modric, Bale; Van der Vaart, Crouch.
Substitutes: Cudicini, Bassong, Walker, Huddlestone, Livermore, Defoe, Pavlyuchenko
Manchester City: Hart; Zabaleta, Clichy, Lescott, Kompany; Barry, Yaya Toure; Nasri, Silva, Aguero; Dzeko.
Substitutes: Pantilimon, Richards, Savic, Milner, Johnson, Tevez, Balotelli.