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Season 2011/12

We need hearts of lions says Zabaleta

  • 04 May 2012 13:25
  • Posted by David Clayton

Pablo Zabaleta believes each and every City player will need to have the heart of a lion at Newcastle on Sunday.

The Argentina defender has been as solid as a rock during his best season for the Blues, but he knows there can be no half measures against Alan Pardew’s men.

“I think the momentum within our team is incredible,” said Zaba. “We won the derby, which was an incredible result for the players, the Club and the fans and our confidence has never been higher.

I think Newcastle will be more difficult than the game against United because they have been on a fantastic run

...Pablo Zabaleta

“They've probably been one of the best teams in the Premier League over the last three months and in Papiss Cisse, they have made a real find.

“The guy is unbelievable and every goal he has scored has been world class. All their players have done very well so it's going to be a really difficult game, but we always thought it would be.

“Having said that, we have all the incentive we need.  We know that we're playing for the title and I think this game will make the difference. We need three points, especially with United playing later in the day.

“We are well aware that if we lose or draw, United can overtake us if they beat Swansea, so we know what is at stake. I can see our players are very focused on the game and there is a very positive atmosphere.”

Pablo also feels City’s form on the road has come good at exactly the right time after a disappointing run of away results after Christmas.

Back-to-back wins at Norwich and Wolves allowed the Blues to re-ignite their title challenge and three more points in the penultimate game of the campaign would likely put City just 90 minutes away from being crowned champions.

“Our performances away from home have been better in the last few games,” he said. “We had a poor run at the beginning of the year and we struggled to find our form.

“But we are back to our best now and St James' Park is the perfect setting for a game of this magnitude. It is a great stadium and they have great fans who are very excited because they're playing for the Champions League spot, but that is not our concern.

“We are only thinking of ourselves. This is a huge opportunity for our club. We are writing our own history as we go along and have two huge game left and our attitude won’t change – we will fight until the end.”

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