Hart - Derby remains crucial
Joe Hart insists the Manchester derby remains pivotal in the Premier League title race and has vowed that City will not give up on their chase of United.
By Rob Parrish - Follow me on Twitter @skysportsrobp
Last Updated: 19/04/12 8:48am
Joe Hart insists the Manchester derby remains pivotal in the Premier League title race and has vowed that City will not give up on their chase of United until their rivals cannot be caught.
The Red Devils hold a five-point advantage over their neighbours with only four games of the season remaining, although the two teams are still to meet at the Etihad Stadium on 30th April.
Roberto Mancini continues to make public statements that the battle for the crown is over, but Hart believes that the Italian is simply trying to take the pressure off his players.
And the England goalkeeper, who is among the nominees for the PFA player of the Year award, wants a maximum haul from their remaining games, starting at Wolves on Sunday, so that they can take advantage of any slips from Sir Alex Ferguson's men.
Hart told Sky Sports News HD: "There is no point in us turning up on Sunday if the title race is over. We've still got to believe, we've still got to fight for every single point available.
"I don't think he (Mancini) means that the season is over. I think he is just trying to play it down a little bit and let us get on with what we need to do. There is no way any of us would give up until it is mathematically impossible.
"I know three of them definitely can be overturned - that is in our hands.
"Other than that, we've got to rely on other teams. We can only battle away and try and win every game and hope that United slip up."
Much has been made of the return to the City team of Carlos Tevez after his self-imposed exile in Argentina earlier in the season after a very public falling out with Mancini, with the manager back-tracking on his initial statement that striker would never play for the club again.
Hart claims that the return of their former captain has not caused any rifts in the dressing room, and that all the players are united in the cause of trying to lift the Premier League crown, with the powerful forward's recent hot-streak particularly welcome.
"We have been a bit dry on goals recently, so that fresh Carlos input has been awesome," he added.
"You can say what you want about Carlos Tevez, but when he plays, he plays to win and he plays for his team-mates.
"There are far more important things in our lives than what went on and what didn't go on.
"We have that goal of trying to win the league and Carlos has bought into that. He has not come in and tried to make any big statements. We have just all moved on."