Manuel Pellegrini still believes in Manchester City title defence

Manchester City's Chilean manager Manuel Pellegrini watches the action during the English Premier League football match between West Ham United and Manchester City at Upton Park in London on February 11, 2014
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Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini refuses to believe that his side's title defence could be over if Chelsea beat Manchester United.

Manuel Pellegrini has refused to accept that Manchester City's title bid suffered irreversable damage in Saturday's 2-1 defeat to West Ham United.

Goals in either half from Morgan Amalfitano and Diafra Sakho proved enough for the Hammers to down the reigning champions and leave them five points adrift of leaders Chelsea.

The Blues travel to Old Trafford to face Manchester United this afternoon, where victory would see Jose Mourinho's side establish an eight-point cushion over City, but Pellegrini insists that it is still all to play for on the title front.

"We are just starting the season, we have 80 points left to play for," Pellegrini is quoted by BBC Sport as saying after his side's defeat.

"So it is early. We will continue fighting because there is no title being handed out at the moment."

Pellegrini's side now gear up for the Manchester derby with local rivals United next Sunday.

Diafra Sakho of West Ham United celebrates scoring his team's second goal with Enner Valencia of West Ham United during the Barclays Premier League match between West Ham United and Manchester City at Boleyn Ground on October 25, 2014
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