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Monday 21 May 2018

Sterling: City have become 'killers' in title hunt

City’s Raheem Sterling. Pic: Reuters
City’s Raheem Sterling. Pic: Reuters

Raheem Sterling says Manchester City have turned into cold-eyed "killers" as they hunt down the Premier League title.

The Blues winger plunged the final dagger into Huddersfield after a tense, physical Roses battle, to stretch his team's record-breaking winning run to 18 games.

And he afterwards said that he never had any doubt that City would bounce back from going behind to an own goal by Nicolas Otamendi in the first half.

Sterling was again a key figure for the Blues, winning the early penalty that saw Sergio Aguero draw them level, before being in the right place to deflect the ball into the net for a fortunate winner.

He said: "We wanted to get a goal as soon as possible, and the message was to get right at them, get in their area and try to pin them back, and that's what we did," he said.

"With the mentality we have had this season I didn't have one doubt for a moment. We kept going, dug deep and got that early goal which pushed us to the win.

"From what I have seen this season from the boys, the work rate and mentality we have had, we have tried to be killers, and we showed that in the second half.

"It just shows the character from the boys. If you could see the dressing room at half-time you would see everyone was disappointed, everyone was ready for the second half.

Raring

"There were no heads dropped. Everyone was pumping and raring to go."

Sterling has made key contributions for City all season - he is top scorer with 12 goals, and those strikes include crucial late goals against Everton, Bournemouth, West Brom and Feyenoord, a vital double strike against Crystal Palace, and two big goals against Napoli. He has already broken his personal record for a season, but did not say if he has already revised the secret goals target he set for himself at the start of the season.

"I just get in the box and try to be as calm as possible," he said. "I set myself targets every season - sometimes you don't match them, but that's the thing about football you always have another year to try again.

"I am just really happy to be working in such a fantastic team.

"I can't tell you the target because I don't want to get slated for it! I always set myself a realistic target, but high standards as well, and hopefully I can match them this year."

Meanwhile, Southampton boss Mauricio Pellegrino insists City can be defeated as he prepares to take on the unbeaten Premier League pacesetters at the Etihad Stadium tomorrow night.

"Nobody is unbeatable in football and in sport," Pellegrino said. "Every single team has got problems, because yesterday Huddersfield were really close to getting something.

"We have to be on the top if we want to have any chance.

"Hopefully it could be a nice day for us."

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