Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini says they can haul in leaders Manchester United.

Mancini believes that his side's Champions League exit allied with United's two huge showdowns against Real Madrid could help them retain their title.

He said: "I think when we arrive at the end of February, the gap will be very, very small."

Mancini believes that United are due a blip, like the one at the end of last season that saw them surrender their eight-point lead with six games left.

He added: "Every team during the season has two or three weeks when they don't play well, when their performances go down and they don't score - even if you have fantastic strikers."