Mancini blames fatigue as City scrape past Wigan

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Manchester City's Spanish midfielder David Silva celebrates after scoring in the English Premier League match against Wigan Athletic at The City of Manchester Stadium, Manchester, on Saturday. Man City won 1-0.

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MANCHESTER, England - Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini blamed tiredness for his side's abject showing in its 1-0 win against Wigan Athletic on Saturday at Eastlands.

City may have all the money in the world but it struggled throughout this contest as Wigan played the more expansive and attractive soccer.

The win reduces the gap between City and second-placed Arsenal to four points but City manager Mancini has work to do after watching his side only win a game against relegation-haunted Wigan thanks to a huge stroke of luck.

A tame shot from David Silva after 38 minutes somehow slipped through the grasp of Wigan goalkeeper Ali Al-Habsi who let the ball squirm from his grasp and that proved to be enough.

City has already played 45 games this season, just three short of how many it played in the entirety of last season alone and Mancini pointed to that statistic as the reason for his side's disappointing efforts.

He said: "In the second half it was very hard I think we were very tired and that was the difference.

"We played three games ago with the same players and we were very tired but the win was important. Also in the first half we played well and had frequent chances to score.

"In this moment when we are paying every two days it is very difficult. For them, it is not easy to be strong every game, it is hard and that is the problem at the moment. They have some days off now and the players can recover."

The home side's preparations for this encounter were hindered by the announcement on Thursday that defender Kolo Toure has been suspended indefinitely after failing a drugs test.

Reports suggest that his urine sample failed after the Ivorian took one of his wife's dietary pills and the player is currently awaiting the results of a secondary sample before officials decide what sanctions to take.

"Kolo is a fantastic man and a serious professional player," Mancini said.

"This victory is for Kolo and I think it is a moment for him."