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Friday 15 December 2017

Mancini predicts tense fight for fourth

Manchester City boss Roberto Mancini expects the race for the final Champions League place to go down to the wire after his side kept pace with their rivals with victory over Fulham yesterday.

City moved into fifth place in the Premier League, climbing above Liverpool, and will go fourth ahead of Tottenham on Wednesday if they defeat Everton.

Roque Santa Cruz and Carlos Tevez scored before half-time at Eastlands, before Danny Murphy pulled one back from the penalty spot and set up a tense finale.

"It was an important win," Mancini said after the 2-1 victory. "Here, against Fulham, it's difficult. They're a good team and have a good manager.

"It was important for us, but it'll be a fight until the end of the season with the other three teams. Liverpool are a fantastic team, and I think we must fight with them, Aston Villa and Tottenham."

Mancini confirmed England defender Joleon Lescott has suffered a hamstring injury and will have a scan today to determine the extent of the problem.

Lescott picked up the injury during the warm-up against Fulham and is the latest player to give Fabio Capello a fitness scare.

"Joleon had a problem before the game in the warm-up, a muscle," said Mancini. "I think he can't play against Everton. At the moment I don't know how long he'll be out. He'll have a scan."

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