Carlos Tevez's late first-half goal allowed City to edge Aston Villa 1-0 at Villa Park tonight to remain 12 points in arrears of neighbours Manchester United but despite the gap, Mancini was holding hope of a potential fightback.
"We did a good performance and it was difficult," he told Sky Sports 1.
"For us it was important to stay 12 behind United, with 10 games left you never say never. Keep on winning and you never know, this is football.
"Last year nobody thought it was possible but 12 points in 10 games... If they lose four..."