Belfast Telegraph

Friday 29 August 2014

Mancini calls for focus

Roberto Mancini will make changes for Manchester City's clash with West Brom

Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini admits it is difficult for the Blues to keep fully focused on their Barclays Premier League run-in ahead of Saturday's FA Cup final against Wigan.

City's quest to cement second place in the table continues on Tuesday evening when they host West Brom, three days after they had to settle for a point at Swansea. Following the 0-0 draw with the Swans, Mancini expressed his frustration at how his players had failed to make the most of their opportunities during the game.

And on the subject of negotiating league fixtures in the last few days building up to a Wembley trip, the Italian said: "It is difficult and (the Swansea match) was difficult as our concentration is on the final. But we need to play these games and for us it is important to win."

Mancini has emphasised that it is far from ideal to have to play four days before a cup final, but acknowledged that Wigan - who host Swansea on Tuesday night - are in the same boat.

"It would be better to have one week (of unbroken preparation)," Mancini said.

"But we play Wigan and it is the same for them. Then we have four days to prepare."

Mancini, who rested striker Carlos Tevez by dropping him to the bench for the Swansea match, is set to shuffle his pack further for the visit of the Baggies.

Midfielder Yaya Toure was withdrawn at half-time at the Liberty Stadium as a precaution and may sit out the clash with Albion

Mancini said: "We need to change as we will be playing a second game in three days and we need some players to be fresh."

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