x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Mancini wants Manchester City to finish on a high note

The Italian is set to pair Argentines Carlos Tevez and Sergio Aguero up front againt Wolves, who will be relegated if they do not win.

Carlos Tevez, right, has scored four goals in his last two games alongside his Argentina teammate Sergio Aguero, left. The two are likely to start up front against Wolves today at Molineux. Ian Kington / AFP
Carlos Tevez, right, has scored four goals in his last two games alongside his Argentina teammate Sergio Aguero, left. The two are likely to start up front against Wolves today at Molineux. Ian Kington / AFP

Manchester City's Premier League title bid has been revived by the return to the team of Carlos Tevez after five months absent without leave in Argentina.

The Argentine striker has played the last two games - his first starts since September - scoring four goals in the process as City have won 4-0 and 6-1 to close Manchester United's lead at the top of the table to five points with four games to play.

It has led to questions about what position City could be in had Tevez been available for the entire season, but Roberto Mancini, the manager, is not dwelling on what might have been.

"Carlos can find his best form like this, playing. I think his last two games that he played, he improved a lot," Mancini said.

"Also without Carlos we scored a lot of goals, but it is normal if you have players like Carlos you can score more goals. Maybe there are some moments you have two strikers that maybe are not in form, but you have another two.

"This is the difference, it is clear - but we did everything in November and December to try to take Carlo here again."

Tevez has linked superbly with his countryman and top scorer Sergio Aguero since his return to the starting line-up and the pair are likely to start today away at bottom-placed Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Mancini, who has repeatedly claimed the title race is over, said: "At this moment we can do nothing, only continue to play like in the last two games - that is possible - and to try to win the next game."

The Italian wants to finish the season strongly for the supporters, not least an eight-year-old girl who recently sent him fruit pastilles in the post after spotting his penchant for eating them during games.

Mancini said: "I like the pastilles, she sent me pastilles. It was very kind. I love our supporters, at Norwich they were incredible. I think we want to finish our job this year well for them, because I think they deserve everything, to have a lot of victories for the future, because they are fantastic."

Wolves will be relegated this weekend and Terry Connor, the interim manager, acknowledges his reputation will suffer if the side go down. Connor had spent 13 years as a member of the coaching staff under four different managers before he was asked to replace the dismissed Mick McCarthy for the final 13 games.

"I will be tarnished by it [if Wolves go down]," he said. "That's not a problem. I worked under Mick [McCarthy] for a number of years so I will be accepting whatever responsibility I have to take for the season. The last 13 games have been my responsibility."

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