Manuel Pellegrini has insisted that Manchester City have more of a winning mentality than Manchester United.
The local rivals meet in Sunday’s derby at the Etihad Stadium and are level in the Premier League, having both taken seven points from their first four matches, as well as winning their opening Champions League fixtures.
United are the defending league champions, having won 13 of the last 21 titles, and are often credited with possessing the best winning mentality in English football, but City manager Pellegrini disagrees.
"I know that our mentality at the moment is very strong," he said. "More strong than Manchester United."
Whereas United have already faced Chelsea and Liverpool this season, City have not taken on any other title rivals, but Pellegrini believes his players have shown their winning mentality in other games.
He added: "It is not the first important match we have played. I think the players have prepared every day to try to think as a big team and play as a big team."
While Pellegrini is determined to defeat David Moyes’ side, he does not believe Sunday’s clash is a title decider.
“We have 38 games to play and two of them are [against] Manchester United,” he said. “For me, it is very important to win against Manchester United but the most important thing is to win the title. It is not the last match of the season.”