Defender Kolo Toure admits Manchester City have to find an answer to their defensive problems if they want to remain in the hunt for trophies.
A much-changed team slipped to a surprise 4-2 defeat at home to Aston Villa in the third round of the Carling Cup having twice taken the lead on Tuesday.
Roberto Mancini’s side have conceded 14 goals in seven matches — 16 in eight matches if the Community Shield is counted — and have yet to keep a clean sheet.
Conceding two late goals in the Bernabeu cost them a famous victory against Real Madrid last week and now one of the four competitions they would have expected to challenge in has slipped through their grasp.
Defensive errors certainly cost them against Villa and Toure accepts it is a concern. “It was a disappointing night,” he said. “The team didn’t play well. We conceded four goals, which is not good, and we gave some cheap goals to Villa as well.
“It concerns us because a team like Man City cannot expect to concede four goals at home. Since the season started we have not had a clean sheet and that is very important when you want to be a top club, you have to defend better as a team.
“As a defender and as a group we have to work on it because mistakes were done by a few players and when you win it is every body so when you lose it is everybody.”
Mancini fumes at under-par City
A frustrated Roberto Mancini admitted his Manchester City side were not good enough after exiting the Carling Cup in a surprise 4-2 defeat at home to Aston Villa.
City twice threw away a lead given to them by Mario Balotelli and then Aleksandar Kolarov — after Villa old boy Gareth Barry’s own goal had got the visitors back in it. “It was a difficult match because Aston Villa were a good team,” said Mancini. “We didn’t play well and we had some unlucky moments but I think they deserved to go through. We are so disappointed. We didn’t play well and our play is not quick, we want one touch more every time and this is no good. It is the fourth competition but it is the only competition we didn’t win.”