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Football: Sinclair slump is my fault, says Mancini

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Roberto Mancini has blamed himself for Scott Sinclair's failure to make an impact at Manchester City since his move to Eastlands.

Sinclair, 24, joined the Blues for £6.2 million ($9.6 million) from fellow Premier League side Swansea City in August.

But the winger has made only three starts for Mancini's side in all competitions, with most of his appearances being as a late substitute, and may not make the starting line-up for City's league match away to his former club on Saturday.

But Italian boss Mancini insisted Friday none of this was Sinclair's fault, although he was unsure if the Englishman will remain at Eastlands, given his last league start was in September.

"I don't know this (if he will stay)," Mancini said Friday. "This situation with Sinclair is difficult because I didn't give him a lot of chances to play. He is very unlucky.

"It is my fault, not his fault. A young player like Scott who is a good player deserves to play always. For him, it was a really difficult year this year.

"Scott is young and he has good quality but this year was difficult for him. It is better if he can have another solution," the Italian added.

"If he stays here, maybe, he can change everything but I can understand his frustration in this moment because he didn't play a lot of games.

"For me, he is a good player. We have one team. For him, it was difficult. I repeat: He did everything well, he worked well, he is a good guy, he deserves to play. I can understand when one player can't play often, it is difficult."

Reports in the British media on Thursday suggested that City are interested in a move for 27-year-old Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fernandinho with £20 million the fee that may tempt the Ukrainian side to sell the player.

But Mancini believes there will be a number of clubs interested in the Brazilian as well as he looks to strengthen his side in a bid to mount a more aggressive challenge to recently-installed champions Manchester United for the Premier League title that City won last season.

"We can talk about Fernandinho," said Mancini. "Fernandinho is a good player but he plays for Shakhtar. I don't think there are a lot of good players around the world.

"There are also four or five top teams who want to buy good players. It could be difficult."

Former Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho has hinted he may return to England ahead of next season and Mancini believes any team under the control of the Portuguese, linked with a second spell in charge of Chelsea, would lead to a more competitive Premier League.

"I think that it is important that next year (season) there will be four or five teams who can play for the title," said Mancini. "Not only two (United and City) , like in the last two years.

"It is better for the championship. Five teams that fight for the title, I think is good.

"I think next year will be stronger than this year probably. Also Chelsea is a good team this year. We hope Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal can play for the title."

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130503/football-sinclair-slump-my-fault-says-mancini