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Mancini: City Must Gain Points Before United Derby
Guardian, January 14th, 2013 1:52PM

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Roberto Mancini was pleased with the three big points Manchester City picked up at the Emirates on Sunday, but he warned that his men will have to claw back two to three points on league leader Manchester United before the teams meet on April 6 to be in a position to defend their title this season. The 2-0 victory was City’s first win away to Arsenal in the English Premier League since 1975.

"It was an important victory because it's difficult to play and win here," the Italian said before shifting his focus to Alex Ferguson’s team. "We have the derby on 6 April and we need to arrive there five or four points behind; it is OK. We know that we are behind. I don't think that we deserve to stay seven points behind United but that is where we are. We need to play well, that is all we can do, we need to work strong if we want to have a chance at the end." Mancini later said he would appeal Mike Dean’s decision to send-off captain Vincent Kompany for what appeared to be a two-footed challenge on Arsenal’s Jack Wilshere.

Meanwhile, Arsenal coach Arsene Wenger blamed the loss on the Gunners timid start to the game, which was compounded by Laurent Koscielny’s 10th minute dismissal for bringing down Eden Dzeko when he was in a goalscoring position. "You have to live with that decision but, overall, we started too timid with not enough authority," Wenger said. "We allowed them to dictate. You have to impose your own personality, especially defensively, and we did not do that.”

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