Pablo Zabaleta: 'Not easy to keep winning mentality'

Zabaleta: 'Not easy to keep winning mentality'
© PA Photos
Pablo Zabaleta believes that Manchester City need a stronger mentality to become one of the best sides in Europe.

Pablo Zabaleta has admitted that Manchester City have struggled to maintain their winning mentality this season.

The Premier League champions are 12 points behind league leaders Manchester United ahead of this afternoon's fixtures.

The 28-year-old told reporters: "We are a team [built] over the last four years; it's not really easy for a team to build up the mentality to try to keep winning every year, like top teams around Europe.

"Probably this year we needed to show we wanted to retain the title and it's been very difficult. So we know that we need to do something more, give something more, try to do better, to create that strong mentality that we need.

"We know we have great, fantastic players but probably we have to be stronger as a group to be one of the top teams in Europe."

City face Aston Villa on Monday.

Southampton's Jason Puncheon celebrates scoring the opening goal in his team's match against Manchester City on February 9, 2013
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City23202167175062
2Manchester UnitedMan Utd23155348163250
3Chelsea24155443162750
4Liverpool23138254282647
5Tottenham HotspurSpurs23135546212544
6Arsenal23116641301139
7Burnley239771920-134
8Leicester CityLeicester238783432231
9Everton2376102538-1327
10Watford2375113342-926
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham2367102941-1225
12Crystal Palace2367102133-1225
13Bournemouth2366112435-1124
14Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2366111939-2024
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2365122131-1023
16Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2458111731-1423
17Southampton2349102334-1121
18Stoke CityStoke2355132350-2720
19West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom23310101830-1219
20Swansea CitySwansea2345141435-2117
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