Elated Mancini hails crazy finish
Roberto Mancini called it a "crazy season" after a last-gasp goal from Sergio Aguero handed Manchester City their first title in 44 years in the most dramatic climax to a Premier League season.
As the game entered stoppage time City were trailing 2-1 after Djibril Cisse and Jamie Mackie overturned a first half goal from Pablo Zabaleta, meaning Manchester United's 1-0 win at Sunderland would have been enough to see them win the title.
But after Edin Dzeko brought City level Aguero fired home with just seconds remaining to spark an explosion of joy at Eastlands as the club ended their 44-year trophy drought.
Mancini told Sky Sports: "It was incredible - they deserved this. To win it like this is incredible. I don't think I've ever seen a finale like this.
"We didn't deserve to lose, we had a lot of chances and we deserved to win the game and championship. It's fantastic for the club and the supporters after 44 years. It's been a crazy season and a crazy last minute.''
The Italian added: "Five minutes from the end, I didn't think we'd win this game. But we deserved to win this and deserved to win the title. We were on top for 20 games. I think for us it was really important to start winning this championship, Manchester City can have a big future now.''
City captain Vincent Kompany admitted the dramatic ending was almost too much for him. "You want to say it's the best moment of your life but, if I'm honest, please never again this way. Even though the first half was really good we just couldn't get through.''
Kompany insists he never lost faith, though. "I never stopped believing,'' he said. "When Edin scored that goal, it reminded me of so many other moments during the season when we've done this before. There was no reason not to believe.
"It's not sunk in yet. I don't know what happened at the end, it was just a huge mess. I'm so happy for the guys cos they've given so much this season. We've dreamed of this all our lives and now we're champions. See the fans and how happy they are - unbelievable.''
Samir Nasri, a summer signing from Arsenal, was thrilled to taste league success in his first season at the Etihad. "It's the first time in my life I've won something like this - to be losing 2-1, to come back and score the winning goal to give us the title,'' he said.
"It's amazing and I'm really happy. I knew I made the right decision (coming here) and tonight I want to celebrate with all our fans, my family and my friends.''
Goalscorer Pablo Zabaleta added: "I thought when we were losing 2-1, I thought 'we'll score one goal and we're still going to lose'. I don't want to wake up from this. You just look at the players and the fans, everybody deserves this.
"The most important thing for any team is when you believe. If you believe in yourself you win. We believed until the last minute.''
Goalkeeper Joe Hart hopes it is the first league title of many for City. "I'm proud to play for Man City and I'm proud to play with these boys,'' he said. "It means the world to these fans - we need to do it again now, let's do it again.''
City's controversial striker Mario Balotelli, who came off the bench with the team 2-1 behind today, used the occasion to take a swipe at his critics. He said: "We are the best and that's why we won.
"We didn't play very well in a few games but the rest of season we played very well so we deserved to win. Personally I think too many people talked and too many people said bad things about me, and now they have just to shut up.''
And the Italian forward insisted his future is at the Etihad Stadium, saying: "Manchester City is a great club, a great team, I have great team-mates. I don't see my future far from here so I think I want to be here.''