Mancini ready to wield the axe

Roberto Mancini is ready to wield the axe on his misfiring Manchester City stars for this weekend's FA Cup fifth round tie with Leeds.

Last Updated: 17/02/13 at 13:11 Post Comment

Roberto Mancini: Manchester City boss set to wield the axe

Roberto Mancini: Manchester City boss set to wield the axe

The City boss was furious with his team after their 3-1 defeat at Southampton as they fell 12 points behind Manchester United in the Premier League title race.

And Mancini insist he will only select players he believes are ready to roll their sleeves up for the cause.

"I am sure we will change that, because I will change players next week. I only want players who are ready for the fight in the last 12 games," he told the Manchester Evening News.

"I am very angry with a lot of my players, and very disappointed at the performance, because it is impossible to play the way we did.

"We didn't fight for every ball. We can't always win by playing well - that is normal. Sometimes we play well and win, but you also need to be able to win because you fight for every ball, and fight against an opponent who also wants to win the game.

"Every team that plays against us treats it like a Champions League final, but we should know this, it is normal.

"We now have 12 games left, (we) need to do well in the Premier League, and we have the FA Cup - there are games left and we can do better. We need to finish the season the way we did last year."

Carlos Tevez should be available against Leeds after missing the St Mary's defeat because of a family issue.

Defenders Matija Nastasic and Kolo Toure also missed the trip to the south coast after late returns from international duty.

Mancini branded the fixture demands caused by the internationals "ridiculous" but he spared his defence - which included midfielder Javi Garcia playing as a makeshift centre-back - from criticism.

"The fixtures are ridiculous sometimes, as we played on Saturday and then had six players who came back on Friday, and five who came back Thursday night. Sometimes it is impossible," he said.

"Nastasic came back Friday and Kolo came back three or four days ago - plus the last time Javi Garcia played there, he played really, really well.

"On Saturday we played well in defence, but the problem was that we didn't give the defenders any help. They were left to play alone, and we conceded two goals the like of which I have never seen in my life."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

E

ven if United were to sign CR7 & Messi to play upfront, the fact remains Fletcher and Cleverly are playing in midfield. That's where the problem is. Fletcher is too slow with an awful pass, while Cleverly is simply rubbish

mrunited4life
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

T

hese days, these days, you can't say something racist without somebody saying that you're a racist.

tk421
'Wrong' Views Not Silenced By Shouting...

D

rop Rooney (he's so disappointing, overrated and overpaid), and play Di Maria and RVP upfront, much like the set up at the Netherlands team with Roben and RVP...

eric bush3
Di Maria - A Signing of Necessity, or Opportunity?

Footer 365

Indian Super League: Ex-Juventus star David Trezeguet eyes Alessandro Del Piero reunion

David Trezeguet welcomes the impending arrival of ex Juventus team-mate Alessandro Del Piero in the Indian Super League

Transfer news: Ajax say Manchester United have not made approach for Daley Blind

Ajax have had "no contact at all" from Man United over Daley Blind, who will only leave for the "absolute top price".

Transfer news: Nikola Zigic's agent confirms Arsenal's interest

The agent of ex-Birmingham striker Nikola Zigic has told SPORT that Arsenal have expressed an interest in his client.

Mail Box

Should Kagawa Play Ahead Of Mata?

That's one question posed in the afternoon mailbox, although it looks like the Japanese playmaker could soon be on his way. Plus, tipping Palace to go down under Warnock...

Well, This Isn't Going That Well Is It?

Plenty of fall out from Manchester United's shambolic 4-0 League Cup defeat, plus thoughts on Van Persie, Arsenal strikers, Benik Afobe, Celtic and Astroturf...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property