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Mancini targets six of the best
Published : 12 Sep 2010 12:53:49Rss feed
| Submit Comments| Comments (28)| Printable Version1/1Play SlideshowClose MapCity boss Roberto Mancini believes the next six matches could shape the club's season. The Blues have collected only one win in four league games and find themselves already seven points behind leaders Chelsea. The teams are due to meet at Eastlands a week on Saturday - one of a number of crucial games, according to Mancini. City also face Wigan and Newcastle in the league as well as Salzburg on Thursday in the Europa League, then Juventus. In addition they have a Carling Cup tie against West Brom to contend with before the international break in October. That is why Mancini is anxious to get some of his players out of the treatment room and onto the training ground as soon as possible. Wayne Bridge, Jerome Boateng, Aleksandar Kolarov and Mario Balotelli all sat out the 1-1 draw with Blackburn. So too did Nigel De Jong (dead leg) and Emmanuel Adebayor (hamstring) because of injuries - but both could travel to Salzburg. Mancini said: "De Jong was injured on Friday with the very last kick of training. Adebayor's injury came a week ago but I think they should be okay for the next game. "We have a difficult month until the next international break, we need to get some of our injured players back and win these next six games." City were hoping to bounce back against Blackburn after the defeat by Sunderland in their last outing but went behind in the 24th minute. Goalkeeper Joe Hart, now widely recognised as England's number one, and Kolo Toure failed to communicate as Morten Gamst Pedersen launched the ball forward. It meant Nikola Kalinic was left with an open goal and he took full advantage to open the scoring. City's pressure paid off when Patrick Vieira equalised in the 55th minute after a neat one-two with Carlos Tevez. But despite carving out numerous chances Blackburn held firm thanks to Paul Robinson between the posts and Christopher Samba in front of him. Mancini said: "We were a bit unlucky against Blackburn but we gave them a gift for the opening goal so we will just have to work harder to get through this. "It was a strange goal. It can happen. This is football. Joe Hart is a good goalkeeper. "At the moment the luck is against us, but we know we are a good team so we have to keep working well."
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