Barry: 'We need mental strength'
Gareth Barry acknowledged after his team's home defeat to Liverpool in the Carling Cup semi-final first leg on Wednesday that Manchester City will have to stand up to the psychological demands of leading the title race from the front.
The defeat on Wednesday was City's third in their last four games and prompted Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp to say "the pressure is on Manchester City" after his Spurs side closed the gap to the leaders to three points with a win over Everton. City face Tottenham at home a week on Sunday on the same day that Manchester United play away at Arsenal.
Barry said: "I am sure there will be a few comments made, especially as they [Spurs and Man United] are playing before us [this weekend] – that's an ideal time for it. But it has to be all about us now and we can't really worry about other teams. We should be focusing entirely on ourselves."
Barry said he sympathised with his captain Vincent Kompany who served the first of his four-game ban against Liverpool this week following his controversial sending-off against United. The City captain wrote on his Facebook page that he wondered if there would be more red cards sanctioned on the basis of "ifs and maybes".
Barry said: "I know Vinny's views. Ever since I came here he has said how much he has enjoyed playing in the Premier League because of the physical side of it. His comments just show he doesn't want that side taken out of our game. It's why the Premier League is watched all over the world, because it has more pace and more physicality than any other. Vinny was just pointing that out, and to see him get banned for four games for what was not a bad tackle is frustrating for him."
School pitstop for Super Mario
Mario Balotelli added to his City legend yesterday by turning up unannounced at a Manchester college, parking his Bentley and heading in – to ask students if he could use the toilet. After his 'visit' pupils at Xaverian College in Rusholme watched as he strolled around with his friends.
Latest in Sport
Phillip Hughes: #putoutyourbats tribute sees Twitter users pay their respects to Hughes including Graeme Swann and David Warner
Phil Hughes dead: List of players who have tragically died on the cricket pitch
Nani transfer: No future for winger at Sporting Lisbon as club cannot afford his wages when loan deal with Manchester United runs out
This letter from a reader explains why women can’t play football
Phillip Hughes death: UK company Masuri say Australian opener was wearing 'outdated helmet'
- 1 Jennifer Lawrence scores first UK top 40 single with Hunger Games track 'The Hanging Tree'
- 2 Shia LaBeouf claims he was raped during #IAMSORRY art installation performance
- 4 Scientists predict green energy revolution after incredible new graphene discoveries
Obama: The only people with the right to object to immigration are Native Americans
Ukip says babies born to immigrants in the UK should be classed as migrants – which would include Nigel Farage’s own children
The young are the new poor: Sharp increase in number of under-25s living in poverty, while over-65s are better off than ever
Ukip mocked after mistaking Westminster Cathedral – for a mosque
Tamir Rice: 12-year-old boy playing with fake gun dies after being shot by Ohio police
David Cameron sets out immigration reforms: We should distrust Ukip and their 'snake-oil of simple solutions'