Roberto Mancini is hoping a much kinder post-Christmas fixture list can give Manchester City the additional impetus required to turn the Blues into Premier League champions.
Man city's David Silva, Sergio Aguero and Samir Nasri celebrate a goal against Arsenal in EPL on Monday. Pic/Getty Images
City reclaimed top spot after surrendering it for a couple of hours to Manchester United courtesy of David Silva's close-range effort in a 1-0 win over Arsenal yesterday.
Once again their lead is two points, so with their massive goal difference advantage, a draw against Stoke at the Etihad Stadium on Wednesday will be enough to claim the initiative on Christmas Day for the first time since 1929. And after visiting Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham and Manchester United already this term, it does seem the odds are stacked in his side's favour.
"We played at Tottenham, we played against United away, we played against Chelsea away, we played against Liverpool away. At home it won't be easy but it will be better for us," said Mancini.
"In the next two months United have to play Tottenham, Chelsea and Arsenal away and City. This is important.
"But we know United are a really strong team. We can't think we can win the title without fighting against United. This is impossible."