Manchester City will not give up and will fight until the last moment to claim an unlikely Premier League title, according to manager Roberto Mancini.
Mancini's men led the league for the first half of the season but have slipped eight points behind rivals Manchester United with six games left. The two clubs meet in the Manchester derby on April 30 and ahead of Wednesday's game with West Bromwich Albion, the Italian was bullish over suggestions that the title race was already over.
"It's [the title] not over. In football it's never finished," he said. "For this reason, I believe always. But we did a fantastic season and we need to finish well.
"It's not easy, but we need to think positively. I'm proud of all my players for what we did until today. We now need to continue to win to get the maximum points we can. Then we will see.
"I will never say we can't win the league if there is still a chance. That is not my life, never. Also last year, if you remember, six games to the end Chelsea were six or seven points [behind]. But they went to Manchester three games to the end three points behind. We are professional, we need to finish well and we need to win the games we have left."
There is a chance that United could clinch their 20th championship at the Etihad Stadium, but Mancini insisted that he is only focused on his side.
"I don't know this. I just know today we have 15 points more than we had at this stage last year," he said.
"So I can say we did well. Now it's clearly difficult for us to win the title. But we hope they can lose three or four points before the derby and after that we'll see. I repeat, six games to the end. 18 points. Never say never."