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City owner backs Mancini

Manchester City owner Sheikh Mansour has given his strongest hint yet that manager Roberto Mancini will not be replaced at the end of the season - whether or not the club go on to claim the Premier League title.

• Marriner to ref Manchester derby
• Hart: Title race back on
• Nani: Utd ready to respond at City

City are currently three points behind arch-rivals Manchester United in the title race, with a potentially decisive derby between the two clubs looming at the Etihad Stadium in a week's time.

However, Mancini's future has been the subject of much speculation throughout the current campaign, with some recent reports suggesting Real Madrid manager Jose Mourinho had been lined up to succeed the Italian in the summer.

Sheikh Mansour has seemingly given Mancini his full support, however, saying that he is "satisfied" with what he has seen from players and staff alike this season, even if they don't go on to claim the title.

"The difference is three points and we do have a chance [to win the title],'' Mansour said in an interview with Abu Dhabi TV, "but whatever happens, and even if we don't win, I am very happy and satisfied with the players, the team and the management.

"They have performed very well and have improved in their last few matches.''

Manchester City are bidding for their first top flight title since 1968.

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