Roberto Mancini admitted that Manchester City's title defence is all but over after a 3-1 defeat at Southampton left them potentially facing a 12-point gap to Manchester United.
The Citizens can only watch on on Sunday when the Red Devils play host to Everton, having taken just two points from their last three games to allow their Manchester rivals to take control of the title race.
Twelve points is too much at this moment and we have not played well in the last two games.Roberto Mancini
City are now 13.00 to retain their top-flight crown, with United 1.05.
"Twelve points is too much at this moment and we have not played well in the last two games," a downbeat Mancini admitted.
"This is strange because we played the whole of January really well, I don't know why we played so bad today - I don't think a team like us can do a performance like today.
"It was worse than poor, we didn't play. We played with maybe two players in this game and with 11 against two it is difficult to win.
"Probably we think that because we won last year we are top players, but if you want to stay on the top for a long time, you have to work always and forget what you did last year."
City are back in action next Sunday when they play host to Leeds United of the fifth round of the FA Cup, with Mancini's 3.50 to win the competition this season.
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