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Hunger is back at Barca

Barcelona
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Maicon: Mancini passion crucial for City

Manchester City defender Maicon has defended the "passion" of Roberto Mancini following the manager's latest touchline bust-up.

• Mancini 'tired' of rival bosses
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• Jolly: City self-destruct

Mancini fell out with Aston Villa counterpart Paul Lambert during his side's Capital One Cup defeat at the Etihad Stadium midweek. Previously, Mancini has had altercations with Everton's David Moyes, while during last year's crucial Manchester derby the Italian found himself in conflict with Sir Alex Ferguson.

Maicon believes all top-level managers must show the same determination Mancini demonstrates on the sidelines.

"He can get passionate but that is the way he should be, a passionate coach who demands high standards. If he gets angry he reminds everybody of the standards required.

"There is a minimum requirement that is always there. The players know they have to perform at that level.

"All winning coaches are the same so if Sir Alex has the hairdryer, Roberto has the same passion.

"All winning managers are the same. They show this passion to the players because they really want to win and the players can feel that. Roberto is no different. He's a winning manager," Maicon said.

Maicon spent three years working under Mancini at Inter Milan, and insists that relationship was a critical factor behind his move to exit the Serie A after six years at the San Siro.

"Roberto is one of the main factors in choosing this club," Maicon said. "To have someone I have worked with who can help me. I know what he wants and what kind of manager he is."

The Brazil international, though, has been hampered by a heel injury since moving to Eastlands, but hopes to turn around City's inconsistent start to the campaign this Saturday against Fulham.

"It is difficult to say why it is happening because I only just arrived at the club," he said. "The beginning of the season is difficult and a lot of clubs are conceding goals.

"But I know that Roberto is very focused on it. He wants to improve and we have to improve quickly because we can't afford to have any more distance between us and the teams at the top of the league."

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