Roberto Mancini demands strong finish

Mancini demands strong finish
© PA Photos
Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini tells his players that they must respond to last week's defeat at Southampton in a positive manner.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has challenged his players to finish the campaign in a similar fashion to their memorable title charge of last season.

The reigning champions slipped 12 points behind league leaders Manchester United last weekend with a disappointing 3-1 defeat at Southampton.

Mancini has openly admitted that he will wield the axe for the FA Cup tie at home to Leeds United this weekend but wants his squad as a whole to produce a positive finish in all competitions.

He told reporters: "We now have 12 games left, we need to do well in the Premier League and the FA Cup.

"We can do better. We need to finish the season the way we did last season.

"Every team that plays against us plays like it's the Champions League final, this is normal."

City's next Premier League match is at home to Chelsea on Sunday, February 24.

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini on the touchline during the match against rivals Manchester United on December 9, 2012
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1Manchester CityMan City98103242825
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd96212241820
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs85211551017
4Chelsea95131710716
5Watford94321517-215
6Newcastle UnitedNewcastle9423108214
7Arsenal84131210213
8Liverpool83411312113
9Burnley934289-113
10Southampton933389-112
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12Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton9324910-111
13West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom9243710-310
14Leicester CityLeicester92341214-29
15Swansea CitySwansea9225610-48
16Everton8224513-88
17West Ham UnitedWest Ham9225817-98
18Stoke CityStoke92251020-108
19Bournemouth9216613-77
20Crystal Palace9108219-173
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