Manchester City v Aston Villa: Villa could help Liverpool says Paul Lambert, promising his side will 'try to win' at the Etihad

Liverpool need Manchester City drop points to have any chance of winning the league

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert insists his side head to title favourites Manchester City with the intention of playing to win despite there being little riding on the outcome for them.

All the focus has switched to the Etihad Stadium, where City have dropped just five points all season, as Liverpool's slip up at Crystal Palace puts Manuel Pellegrini's side in the box seats.

Few expect either Villa, or Sunday's visitors to Manchester West Ham, to be able to prevent City winning their second title in three years.

With Villa's safety secured by last weekend's win over Hull the general feeling is they will not be in much of a mood to put up a fight but Lambert said that assumption would be wrong.

"We're not going there just to make up the numbers, we're going there to try to win," he said.

"You have to run a lot and run without the ball. We're going to have to work really hard without the ball but you also know you've got to try to win the game and that's what we're going to try and do.

"We'll go there now in a lot better place than we were before the Hull game."

 

City require a maximum of four points from their remaining two home matches such is their superior goal difference over current leaders Liverpool, whom they trail by just a point with a game in hand.

Such a haul would seem almost like a foregone conclusion against two teams safe from relegation in the comfort of mid-table.

Even Lambert thinks City, despite the onus being on them to perform in front of their own fans, will not be affected by the situation they find themselves in - especially after going through the nerve-shredding experience of winning the title on goal difference with virtually the last kick of the game in the 2011-12 season.

"Everybody knows pressure can affect different people in different ways but you look at their squad and their players are world class," said the Scot.

Villa left it uncomfortably late to secure their own future with safety coming in the penultimate game just when it appeared they could get sucked into a last-day relegation battle.

Their players have been under a different pressure to City's for some weeks now but Lambert has been pleased with the spirit they have shown to get themselves out of trouble with a match to spare.

"It was major pressure. It was excruciating at times. They showed character, grit and determination to see a game through when it really mattered," said the Villa boss.

"You have to give them credit too. They are the ones in the dressing room who have to go out and perform."

Arts and Entertainment
filmPoldark production team claims innocence of viewers' ab frenzy
Life and Style
Google marks the 81st anniversary of the Loch Ness Monster's most famous photograph
techIt's the 81st anniversary of THAT iconic photograph
News
Katie Hopkins makes a living out of courting controversy
people
News
General Election
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Revealed: Why Mohammed Emwazi chose the 'safe option' of fighting for Isis, rather than following his friends to al-Shabaab in Somalia

Why Mohammed Emwazi chose Isis

His friends were betrayed and killed by al-Shabaab
'The solution can never be to impassively watch on while desperate people drown'
An open letter to David Cameron: Building fortress Europe has had deadly results

Open letter to David Cameron

Building the walls of fortress Europe has had deadly results
Tory candidates' tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they seem - you don't say!

You don't say!

Tory candidates' election tweets not as 'spontaneous' as they appear
Mubi: Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash

So what is Mubi?

Netflix for people who want to stop just watching trash all the time
The impossible job: how to follow Kevin Spacey?

The hardest job in theatre?

How to follow Kevin Spacey
Armenian genocide: To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie

Armenian genocide and the 'good Turks'

To continue to deny the truth of this mass human cruelty is close to a criminal lie
Lou Reed: The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond the biographers' and memoirists' myths

'Lou needed care, but what he got was ECT'

The truth about the singer's upbringing beyond
Migrant boat disaster: This human tragedy has been brewing for four years and EU states can't say they were not warned

This human tragedy has been brewing for years

EU states can't say they were not warned
Women's sportswear: From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help

Women's sportswear

From tackling a marathon to a jog in the park, the right kit can help
Hillary Clinton's outfits will be as important as her policies in her presidential bid

Clinton's clothes

Like it or not, her outfits will be as important as her policies
NHS struggling to monitor the safety and efficacy of its services outsourced to private providers

Who's monitoring the outsourced NHS services?

A report finds that private firms are not being properly assessed for their quality of care
Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

Zac Goldsmith: 'I'll trigger a by-election over Heathrow'

The Tory MP said he did not want to stand again unless his party's manifesto ruled out a third runway. But he's doing so. Watch this space
How do Greek voters feel about Syriza's backtracking on its anti-austerity pledge?

How do Greeks feel about Syriza?

Five voters from different backgrounds tell us what they expect from Syriza's charismatic leader Alexis Tsipras
From Iraq to Libya and Syria: The wars that come back to haunt us

The wars that come back to haunt us

David Cameron should not escape blame for his role in conflicts that are still raging, argues Patrick Cockburn
Sam Baker and Lauren Laverne: Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

Too busy to surf? Head to The Pool

A new website is trying to declutter the internet to help busy women. Holly Williams meets the founders