x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Sheikh Mansour content even if Manchester City miss out on title

Improvement in recent games from Mancini's men has left the club owner encouraged.

Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed will not be disappointed if Manchester City fall short in their fight to win the Premier League title.
Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed will not be disappointed if Manchester City fall short in their fight to win the Premier League title.

Manchester United may have handed them a second chance at the Premier League title but Manchester City owner Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed is happy to call this season a success whatever happens next.

City have been given fresh hope after United threw away a 4-2 lead to draw 4-4 with Everton on Sunday to reopen the title race ahead of next week’s derby showdown at the Etihad Stadium.

The derby is now poised to be the biggest ever as City will go above United on goal difference if they can win on home turf.

That means City are guaranteed a first title since 1968 if they can win their remaining three league matches.

Sheikh Mansour told Abu Dhabi TV he was excited to have a shot at the title, but was already pleased with how the season has gone.

“The difference is three points and we do have a chance,” he said. “But whatever happens and even if we don’t win I am very happy and satisfied with the players, the team and the management.

“They have performed very well and have improved in their last few matches.”

The comments indicate manager Roberto Mancini's job is safe regardless of the outcome of the title race.

But while Mansour seems satisfied, those in his employment are determined not to waste a second bite of the cherry.

Midfielder Yaya Toure has told his teammates they must take advantage of United’s slip.

“United’s result was amazing,” he said. “It was an unbelievable day for us with United dropping points at home. For me, it was strange.

“We found out about it on the bus on the way to Wolves. It was quite unbelievable and we now have to try and take advantage.

“We did the first part by beating Wolves but we have to settle down and continue to work hard because United still have three points more than us.

“We have to play them at home and, if you look at the record of United, they are very strong away and it will be a very difficult test for us.

“I think this year the club need to win the cup (title) and it will be difficult.

“But we need to win this derby because it will be one of the most important games the club have had.”

United have already won at the Etihad Stadium this season, emerging 3-2 victors in the FA Cup clash between the two in January, although City played the majority of the game with 10 men after the controversial early dismissal of Vincent Kompany.

City boss Mancini has continued to insist that United will be hard to catch, even with everything in his own side’s hands.

“We have another chance but they have a bigger chance than us at this moment,” he said.

“After the derby, the games United have left are not as difficult as the ones we have to play.

“We have improved a lot from last year. This is important if you are building a team. If you win, you are happy, for sure. But if you are improving, then that’s important.”

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