Manuel Pellegrini has remained steadfast in his repeated belief: “You don’t win the Premier League in December.”
The defending league champion is back in the title race after catching Chelsea, now just three points (or one game) back of the league leaders despite being seven points ahead just a month ago, and it seemed like more.
The Sky Blues have an opportunity to make up some serious ground now. With West Brom on Boxing Day followed by matches against Burnley, Sunderland, and a struggling Everton side, it’s all in front of Manchester City if they can put together a string of good performances. The team is already on a six-match league winning streak (eight over all competitions), so that seems likely.
But Pellegrini doesn’t want to think about who’s ahead of him, just about what’s in front of him.
“We are not thinking about Chelsea, we are thinking about our own team. We know that it’s important to have our own pressure to win the next game, and as I said before you never win the title in December. We have a long five months to continue playing the way we are so far, and we will see at the end of the season which team has more points.”
Pellegrini, to his credit, said the same thing all last year, and despite sitting back for much of the year, the club made a late move past a slip-up from Liverpool to take control of the title race for good.
Chelsea will host Manchester City on January 31 in the reverse fixture at Stamford Bridge, while the two sides drew 1-1 at the Etihad in September.