Victory over Leeds just for starters, says Mancini

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 19 February, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 19 February, 2013, 4:49am


Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini believes his team's commanding 4-0 FA Cup victory over Leeds could be the springboard for an unlikely onslaught on leaders Manchester United at the top of the Premier League.

City currently trail their neighbours by 12 points, with speculation mounting over Mancini's future given their current indifferent form. Mancini, who ended City's 35-year wait for silverware when he led them to the 2011 FA Cup, would do his chances of holding on to the job a power of good were he to lead them to success in this season's tournament.

But the Italian insisted that if his side perform as they did in advancing to the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, they could overhaul United in the league.

"In Italy, you say a game like this is like brodino soup, a starter," said Mancini. "I hope it can help us to start to win in the Premier League. I am happy because it was important to win after losing to Southampton [in the league the previous week]. If you score two goals in the first 20 minutes it's easier, but you know the FA Cup is a difficult competition and Arsenal, Everton, other teams who play in the Premier League, are out.

"Every team play like it is the Champions League final. You should play 100 per cent if you want to win. If you don't play with concentration, it's difficult. We started with great intensity. We were concentrating on this target. After we scored four goals, the performance was important."

City's fans certainly still back Mancini with his name ringing out around Etihad Stadium.

Two goals from Sergio Aguero, the first a disputed penalty after 14 minutes that followed Yaya Toure's early opening goal, were the highlights of a game that also featured a goal from Carlos Tevez soon after the restart.