Roberto Mancini laughs at criticism following win
Roberto Mancini has to laugh at the bizarre fact he has been branded a failure even though his team are only three points off the Premier League summit.
Even after yesterday's impressive 4-1 win at Fulham, the Manchester City boss only trails Avram Grant as the most likely top-flight boss to get the sack.
This despite being in a Champions League spot and in contention for much better from this crazy season.
But Mancini has known for quite a while he faces a tough task changing hearts and minds of those outside the club. Not that he cares.
"Last week I was a stupid manager who was six points behind. Now, I am the 'best manager' because I am only three points off the top of the league," shrugged Mancini.
"This is not important. We must continue to work and improve every game, every day. Only that way can we win.
"But if we have a big problem and a big crisis and we are only three points behind United and Chelsea, then we are doing well.
"But, in our minds, we must only think about working."
Fulham boss Mark Hughes must have been frustrated by his own team being undone by his own stellar signing as City boss.
Carlos Tevez guided the visitors in front after only five minutes and then wrapped up their scoring early in the second-half, after Pablo Zabaleta and Yaya Toure had struck in a three-minute golden spell just before the break.
Zoltan Gera did pull one back for the hosts but Hughes acknowledged the better team were triumphant.
And he has no doubt that with a little more attacking intent on home soil, City can pose a serious title threat this term.
"If they have belief and there's forward-thinking, and maybe they can be more attack-minded - as they were - on more occasions, there is no reason why they shouldn't be contenders," said Hughes.
"They were excellent.
"We were complicit in that with the time we let them have. But they've got as good a chance as anybody."
In front of Diego Maradona, City were rampant, the only downside being the booking for Zabaleta that means he will be suspended for Saturday's trip to Stoke.
"I saw Maradona before the game," said Mancini.
"I was very happy because I saw him in good form. He is a good man.
"For the game, we played fantastic football. I must thank my players for that."
Latest in Sport
Anderlecht vs Arsenal match report: Kieran Gibbs and Lukas Podolski pounce as Arsenal leave it late
Liverpool vs Real Madrid player ratings: Was Cristiano Ronaldo the star man? And how did Mario Balotelli fare?
Liverpool vs Real Madrid match report: Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema run Reds ragged at Anfield
Arsenal player ratings
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?
- 1 Nokia no more: Microsoft drops once-ubiquitous mobile name in favour of its Lumia brand
- 2 Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery reports: 'I'm living a fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
- 3 Banksy not arrested: Internet duped by fake report claiming artist's identity revealed
- 4 Australian café owner sparks debate after saying 'No' to having unruly children on premises
- 5 Couple die within 28 hours of each other after being married for 73 years
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
London bus driver 'kicks gay couple off for kissing'
Support for EU membership 'at highest level since 1991 with most Brits wanting to stay in'