Mancini blasts City slackers

Roberto Mancini tore into his Manchester City players after the 3-1 defeat at Southampton which put a possibly fatal hole in their hopes of retaining the Premier League crown.

Last Updated: 10/02/13 at 11:06 Post Comment

Roberto Mancini: Only a glimmer of a chance left of retaining Premier League tit

Roberto Mancini: Only a glimmer of a chance left of retaining Premier League tit

More of the games that matter

Upgrade in minutes or watch with a NOW TV Day Pass.

City produced one of their worst performances of the season at St Mary's with horrific mistakes from Joe Hart and Gareth Barry contributing to Mancini's troubles.

They are already nine points behind rivals Manchester United and that deficit could be extended to 12 if the Red Devils can beat Everton on Sunday.

Asked what the defeat meant for his team's title hopes, Mancini told ESPN: "We have 10%, maybe. I am disappointed with our performance. They deserved to win.

"It'll be very difficult to win the league. I use to be always be optimistic and want to be in this moment, but it's difficult.

"We didn't play well. We conceded a goal that I have never seen in my life. That's it. Now we can do nothing - only say congratulations to Southampton for their performance.

"I think (the players) understand that we played really bad. I think it's the worst game in the last two or three years, maybe.

"I've never seen our team concede goals like this. In the end we made two incredible mistakes. The performance was really poor. We played this game with only two or three players. Three versus 11 was really difficult.

"We're missing Vinny (Kompany) and missing (Matija) Nastasic, and we have some players who are not in form. They played really bad - without strength, without personality. I'm very disappointed in them.

"The players were away on international duty - that's not an excuse, but it is a reason. Some of our players came back on Friday and we played today. This made it difficult."

City were second best for large periods of the game at St Mary's and fell behind in just the seventh minute when Jason Puncheon tucked away the rebound from Rickie Lambert's strike.

The reigning champions then became their own worst enemy as Steve Davis doubled the home side's lead after Hart allowed Lambert's shot to squirm through his hands.

Edin Dzeko reduced the arrears before half-time but a Barry own goal early in the second half secured a first win for Saints' boss Mauricio Pochettino and left Mancini ruing his side's performance.

Asked if it was a poor performance Mancini replied: "No, I don't agree, it was worse than poor."

Mancini also hit out at the midweek international programme and believes a number of his players returned to City's Carrington training base looking jaded.

"All of the players came back Thursday night or Friday and when you have 16 players away on international duty it is difficult to prepare," he said.

"Sometimes the fixtures are ridiculous because they don't think about this but we played a bad game."

City are now an outside bet to retain the Premier League crown they secured in such extraordinary standards on the final day of last season and Mancini - now 5/4 favourite with Sky Bet to be the next top flight manager to leave his job - thinks he knows what is to blame.

"We need to work more. Probably we think that, because we won last year, we are top players but if you want to stay on the top for a long time you have to work always and forget what you did last year."

TEAMtalk Facebook Fan Page

The TEAMtalk fan page is a great place to meet like minded people, have football related discussions and make new friends.

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

O

ne of the conclusions from this list is that Man City should never buy a striker in January - good luck Wilfried Bony....

Savinator
F365's Top Ten Worst January Panic Buys

I

was there, it was embarrassing - the team looked totally unbalanced from the off, the defence was woeful and when Mikel came off injured it got even worse with nobody in front of them. Up front on several occasions we had opportunities and nobody would shoot - it was a complete farse! On the back of Salah's performance I'm glad there is talk of getting shot...

Fly1ngh1gh
Cup defeat shames Mourinho

G

reat to see Tommy Rosicky getting some love. A wonderful player. Such a pity we lost so long to injury. I was so excited when we signed him, this resurgence only makes the absences seem more of a lost opportunity.

cheshire-gooner
16 Conclusions: FA Cup Fourth Round Weekend

Footer 365

Capital One Cup: FA charges Chelsea striker Diego Costa over 'stamp' on Liverpool's Emre Can

The FA have charged Chelsea striker Diego Costa with violent conduct over his clash with Liverpool's Emre Can on Tuesday.

Transfer news: Arsenal complete the signing of Villarreal defender Gabriel Paulista

Arsenal have completed the signing of Villarreal defender Gabriel on a long-term deal, for an undisclosed fee.

Gabriel Paulista has joined Arsenal from Villarreal, with striker Joel Campbell

Gabriel Paulista has joined Arsenal from Villarreal, with striker Joel Campbell going to the Spanish club on loan.

Mail Box

Erm... Balotelli To QPR..?

It's an afternoon Mailbox that offers the reaction to the reaction, with a defence for Diego Costa offered, and Balotelli mooted to move to QPR. Plus a silly idea about the Mails...

'Diego Costa Is A Thug.' Sore Losers..?

There is plenty of fallout from Diego Costa's stamps of authority on Tuesday's League Cup semi-final. Plus Blatter, Rodgers' substitutions and stretching the transfer truth...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company