Shay Given has urged his team-mates to take some responsibility themselves and not heap all Manchester City's hopes of a top-four place on the shoulders of manager Roberto Mancini.
After two wins in eight games, culminating in the FA Cup exit at Stoke, Mancini's position was starting to come under increased scrutiny. The response was spectacular, as City romped to a 4-2 victory over Premier League leaders Chelsea at Stamford Bridge to once more re-establish themselves at the head of that scrap for a Champions League berth.
"At a big club, when results don't go your way, everyone looks at the manager," said Given. "But players have to look in the mirror too and work through difficult situations."
He added: "It is the players who cross the white line. They have to stand up to the challenge. Manchester City is a big club and we want to do our business on the pitch."
Certainly, Given does not feel any lingering uncertainty over Mancini's methods compared to those of former boss Mark Hughes are any excuse for under-par performances.
"Every manager has different methods. You get used to them," he said.
"We are working on different things and both he and the team deserve a pat on the back for going to a very difficult place and coming away with a positive result."
It is a result Mancini thinks can transform City's season.
The Italian also feels it is the type of victory the Blues need to get more often if they are to muscle their way onto the top table.
"If we are going to get into the top four, we have to get used to winning at places like Chelsea and Liverpool," said Mancini. "You always have to think you will win."
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