Schmeichel rages at inconsistent refs after Leicester lose at Manchester City

It was confirmed on Saturday that full-back Zabaleta will leave City at the end of this season after nine years at the club, with West Ham his likely destination.

Manchester City now need four points from the remaining two games against West Bromwich Albion on Tuesday and Watford away on Sunday to be certain of a top-four finish although a win should be enough due to their superior goal difference.

Meanwhile, Guardiola claims his first season at City would have ended in the sack at former clubs Barcelona and Bayern Munich.

"At the moment, we have consistency", Wenger said.

Zabaleta joined City from Espanyol for £6.45 million (RM35.9 million) on August 31, 2008, a day before the Abu Dhabi United Group, led by billionaire Sheikh Mansour, completed a takeover that transformed the club's fortunes.

Chelsea had to wait until eight minutes from the end before clinching the Premier League title at the Hawthorns last Friday with a 1-0 win and Guardiola reckons they will be just as keen to spoil City's European hopes. That is a long time, and so it is not easy.

"The first taker was Yaya, but I love it when the players have the personality to take a decision on the pitch", Guardiola said after the match.

"Gabriel is a guy who understands perfectly - he's a young player, 19-years-old - still has a lot, a lot of things to improve". He has helped the club to where it is right now.

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The Spain global told City's official website following a 2-1 victory over reigning champions Leicester: "The final weeks of the season have been tough, but we could win against Leicester and I'm very happy for these three important points".

"We have many possibilities", he said.

Liverpool have 70 points with two games left while fifth-placed Arsenal have 66 with three to play.

MANCHESTER - Pep Guardiola says he needs the Manchester City fans to make Tuesday night's game against West Bromwich Albion a big night as they try to secure Champions League football.

"There is much more optimism that the club hasn't had since I've been here and people want to feel that and be part of it".

Guardiola believes City need more players with Zabaleta's commitment if they are to succeed in the future.

"I knew something wasn't right from the spin of the ball [at the penalty], but that wasn't given in the Champions League, so you never know with the consistency".

  • Tabitha Byrd