Fulham Manager Mark Hughes: Manchester City are title Contenders
Manchester City climbed up to 4th place after they defeated Fulham 4-0 at Craven Cottage. It was the best performance by City’s players this season in which Carlos Tevez scored twice and Yaya Toure and Pablo Zabaleta scored one each. The win now takes City to within just 3 points of table toppers Chelsea.
Mark Hughes who was replaced as Man City Manager by Roberto Mancini believes that if City can play more attacking football like they have done today, they will certainly be title contenders.
He said: “On a professional level, I don't like being beaten in that manner by anybody. There are a lot of good people there that I know - and a lot of players who are playing exceptionally well at the moment who I brought there. “
He added: “Manchester City were excellent in the first half, probably the best I've seen them play this season. In fairness, we allowed it to happen, we were too passive and let them have too much time. But they've got as good a chance in the league as anybody.”
City boss Mancini was under lot of pressure after a run of poor results in which City managed just a single win in 6 games. This win has certainly lifted lot of pressure from the Italian and is now within just 3 points from the top, thanks to the poor run of form from Chelsea who suffered 3 league defeats in 4 games.
Mancini was heavily criticised last week after a second successive home draw against neighbors Manchester United. After the latest win, the Italian has bounced back and confronted his critics saying that last week he was stupid because he was 6 points behind and today he is the best manager as they are only 3 points behind.
The 45-year-old believes that the single win is not that important however they must improve their performance in every game. Defending the 0-0 draw at Eastlands against Birmingham last week he said that the team played just like today. They were playing against a team who had 10 players defending but still could have scored 4 or 5 goal if luck was on their side. If they had scored one goal the match could have easily opened up and it would have made lot of difference. When teams play at home they tend to attack alot more and it is easier to score in such a scenario.
City midfielder Gareth Barry also hailed the team’s performance by saying that it was the best they have played so far in the season. A number of City players made a point before the match and went to greet their former boss Hughes, as a mark of respect.
The Welshman conceded defeat by saying that they were simply swept away by City’s expensive stars but also highlighted their weaknesses. He said that his players should have closed down quicker and also lost some belief after the first goal.
Fulham next face Stoke City in a crunch match and Hughes would be looking to erase the memories of this humiliating defeat by beating the Potters.