On Sunday, Manchester City and Newcastle suffered debilitating defeats to late goals against big rivals. So, come Wednesday, both sides will be desperate to bounce back with a victory in the Capital One Cup fourth round.
Samir Nasri and Manuel Pellegrini will hopeful of a win against Newcastle
City and Manuel Pellegrini will still be smarting from that stunning 2-1 loss to Chelsea, where a humongous defensive mix-up between Matija Nastasic and Joe Hart allowed Fernando Torres to find the winning goal late on.
How a team bounces back from a disappointing defeat, says a lot about the character of the side, and that character will be put to the test on Wednesday by Newcastle, who themselves are looking to roar back from a loss to bitter rivals Sunderland.
"Every team that wants to win something must demonstrate every week the intensity, quality and spirit that we have in this team," Pellegrini said. "If you think that just with quality you are going to win, then I think you are making a great mistake.
"We know exactly that if we want to win something, then we need to play every game with exactly the same concentration and intensity -- then our quality maybe will maybe make a small difference.
"I think for me and the team and the club the pressure must always be the highest pressure to have good performances in every tournament we play, Premier League, Champions League, Capital One, for me is always the same and the pressure is positive."
And City defender Pablo Zabaleta wants his side to go all the way in the Capital One Cup after last season's disappointments. "Last season hurt us. We finished second to United and lost the FA Cup final and this club cannot accept silver medals," Zabaleta said. "The manager always tells us that we have the squad to challenge in everything and that he will always try to put a strong team to win every game.
"The experience against Wigan [in the FA Cup final] has made us more focused. This time the manager has told us that we must aim to win all four competitions that we are in."
Newcastle manager Alan Pardew was disappointed to come away second best against Sunderland, but believes a win over City at St. James' Park will be the perfect tonic.
"We've got to try to turn the situation into a positive for us, and get a couple of wins quickly," Pardew told the Gazette. "We all need a lift after that. As I say, it's hard to take -- an 84th-minute goal when you've bossed the second half.
"This year it [the Capital One Cup] is a priority because we want to win a trophy for our fans. It will be a good way of putting behind the disappointment of Sunderland against Man City. If we can get past Man City, but that is easier said than done."
The last time the two sides met was on the opening weekend of the Premier League season, with City romping to a 4-0 victory. Pardew will be hoping for a better result this time around.
Team News: Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa is available again after serving a one-match suspension, but fellow central defenders Fabricio Coloccini and Steven Taylor are again expected to miss out. Jonas Gutierrez remains in Argentina for undisclosed personal reasons, with Pardew set to give some of the fringe players like Sylvain Marveaux, Sami Ameobi and Vurnon Anita an opportunity from the start.
The likes of Stevan Jovetic and James Milner are expected to be given a run-out by Pellegrini, who is again without skipper Vincent Kompany. Pellegrini is also likely to prefer Costel Pantilimon for Joe Hart, whose mistake lost them two points against Chelsea.
Key men: Newcastle: Papiss Cisse will be keen to get his scoring boots back after a disappointing start to the season which has seen him lose his place in the first XI.
Manchester City: Stevan Jovetic has not quite made as much of an impact as expected, but the game on Wednesday gives the former Fiorentina man the perfect opportunity to show his prowess.
Where to watch
The game is scheduled for a 1.15 am start on Thursday morning with live coverage on Ten Action.
Expected lineups: Newcastle: Krul; Debuchy, Williamson, Yanga-Mbiwa, Santon; Tiote, Anita; Marveaux, Sissoko, Sami Ameobi; Cisse.
Manchester City: Pantilimon; Richards, Demichelis, Lescott, Kolarov; Fernandinho, Garcia; Milner, Jovetic, Nasri; Dzeko.
Prediction: 2-1 to Manchester City
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Most Popular Slideshows
- Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2013: Models' Ramp Walk Aired on Tuesday [PHOTOS]
- Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2013: Bold, Sexy and Sensuous Lingerie Fashion [PHOTOS]
- Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2013: Best Pictures From The Sexiest Show Ever [ SEE PHOTOS/VIDEOS]
- Victoria's Secret Fashion Show 2013: Drooling Guys, Conscious Girls, Naughty Jokes on Twitter [SEE PHOTOS]