Manchester City are up to the task of defending their Premier League crown this season, according to defender Kolo Toure.

The 31-year-old admits the challenge that lies ahead in 2012-13 will be difficult, with local rivals Manchester United, and the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Tottenham all looking to bounce back in the new campaign, but remains confident his team-mates have what it takes to retain the title.

"It will be difficult defending because every team will come down and look to beat us," Toure told Sky Sports. "But when you're champion you need to behave like a champion and take it game by game.

"The confidence is here, everyone now just wants to win and when you win once you want to win every time and City now wants to win every season."

Toure won the title with Arsenal in 2004, but was unable to help Arsene Wenger's side win the league the following year. In fact, the Gunners have failed every season since, with the club's trophy-less spell set to enter an eighth consecutive campaign.

With that in mind, the City stopper knows that the players can't afford to let their standards drop, as the club looks to use last season's success as a platform for even more trophies in the coming years.

"We know how to win and now we have to work hard and give 100 per cent every game," added the Ivorian.

"The Premier League is the hardest in the world and five or six clubs could be champion and for us we will just focus on us and do our best."

Do YOU want to write for GiveMeSport? Get started today by signing-up and submitting an article HERE: