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Silva plays down City blip

Manchester City midfielder David Silva is not concerned by the poor run of form which has seen the Premier League leaders lose four of their last eight games in all competitions.

City lead Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur by three points, with a home game against Spurs coming up next weekend. With City's ability to last the course being brought into question, Silva has been quick to quash talk that they could be about to implode.

Silva is likely to return to the side against Wigan on Monday evening after missing the Carling Cup semi-final first leg defeat to Liverpool through injury. He was forced off at half-time as City crashed out of the FA Cup at home to Manchester United.

"Being knocked out of the FA Cup by United was an important moment - we really wanted to try and retain the trophy," Silva was quoted as saying in The Sun. "And it was a pain watching the Carling Cup defeat on television.

"It was a bad result for us but we could rise above it in the second leg at Anfield. We still have a good chance of making the final. One thing is certain: we have failed in two consecutive home matches against big clubs.

"But I do not think these setbacks are that significant or that City are a club in crisis. The season is very long and any club can suffer defeats. Of course our priority is the League.

"We top the table and any one of our rivals would rather be in our position. Even at this stage a three-point advantage is sensational. But from now on we must play every match as though it were a final."

On returning against the Latics, assistant manager David Platt said on Friday: "David [Silva] did a bit of running yesterday and will do a bit more today. Hopefully he will be back on the training pitch tomorrow.''

However, Platt conceded that striker Mario Balotelli, who aggravated an ankle injury against Liverpool, was more of a doubt. "Maybe. But that's all it is, a maybe,'' he added.

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