Expectations different at Chelsea and Spurs, says Conte

I'm sorry Antonio but we were.

Conte refused to confirm, however, that Chelsea are poised to open talks for Arsenal superstar Alexis Sanchez. It could be a long night for the Chelsea defender, as Sane has quickly become a key figure for Guardiola, and a rising star at just 21 years old. Expectations were quite high, that's why I'm going to fall short. "It's not the right moment to speak about this".

Now, Pochettino's men are playing catch-up again but are chasing Chelsea, whose lead at the top was cut to seven points following Saturday's surprise loss at home to Crystal Palace.

After a hard-earned point at Arsenal on Sunday, Manchester City prepare to face another London giant on Wednesday, league leaders Chelsea.

It will surely end with a Premier League winner's medal to keep the one from 2014-15 company.

Pep Gaurdiola: " Chelsea will be a big game and especially a big game away, it is important to learn from these kinds of games for the future. For this reason to win the title we need 18 points.

And Conte reckons his side showed fighting spirit in character with title-winning sides.

Chelsea failed to avoid defeat against Palace despite boasting a close to full-strength team and having nearly 80 minutes in which to turn the game around.

Man City have not gone four games without a win in the league yet under Guardiola so something has to give. There's a lot of pressure. "Chelsea were underdogs [for the title] at the start of the season, but now we are top and we want to keep this position".

But with David Silva in the Hazard role, City were showing signs of life at the other end and after Aguero, following a one-two with Silva, had been denied by Courtois, they levelled.

Both Conte and Guardiola are in the midst of their debut seasons in England, with the latter this week calling his Chelsea counterpart "superb" and "maybe" one of the best around because of his ability to make his teams play attractive, attack-minded football while remaining defensively solid.

'We have another day to check the situation in the right way. What we can do get better and, of course, buy some players to help us to be stronger.

"In my first season at Juventus, even, we stayed behind and then we overcame Milan and won the title (late on)", he added. "Believe me, I watched the game many times", he admitted.

Brazilian sensation Gabriel Jesus boosted Manchester City's trophy hopes as he returned to training earlier than expected on his 20th birthday, the club revealed on its website.

Chelsea's only injury casualty is wing back Victor Moses, with a toe injury.

Although City appear on course to comfortably exceed the 66 points they managed last season - they now have 58 with nine matches to play - Guardiola admitted earlier this week the level of expectation which greeted his appointment was probably unrealistic.

  • Julie Sanders