A shock defeat for Roberto Mancini's men at Swansea has handed the initiative to the Red Devils at a crucial stage of the season - but will it prove decisive?
Back in August, a comprehensive 4-0 home victory over Swansea got Manchester City's Premier League title challenge off to a flying start. Eight months later, the same opponents have got their revenge and applied the brakes to Roberto Mancini's men - big time.
An 83rd minute Luke Moore header proved enough for the Swans to earn a shock victory over City, just as Manchester United were polishing off a comfortable 2-0 win over West Brom to go top of the Premier League table by a single point with ten matches to play.
City have led, and led fairly comfortably, for some time. But faltering at this stage of the season is not indicative of champions, especially when dealing with an adversary as relentless and experienced as United.
Sir Alex Ferguson and many of his players have been here many times before. The same cannot be said for Roberto Mancini or his expensively-assembled squad, and questions will now be asked as to whether they possess the substance to back up the style and become winners.
With ten matches to play and 30 more points still up for grabs, United's current lead is far from unassailable. But bearing in mind their pedigree at this level, Mancini will be rightly worried to concede the initiative at such a crucial stage of the season.
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