Vincent Kompany believes Frank Lampard's goal against Chelsea for Manchester City may ultimately cost them the title.
The former Chelsea midfielder, who is also the club's leading goalscorer, joined Manchester City on a temporary loan spell having been released by the Blues over the summer.
He emerged from the bench to score a late equaliser in the two team's 1-1 draw at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, but refused to celebrate his goal. Despite that fact Kompany insists that he has already done enough damage - and could cost Chelsea the title.
Just two points separated Manchester City from second placed Liverpool last season at the top of the table, and Kompany believes dropped points in key games could be vital come May.
"Ever since I've been at this club, seasons and big moments have been decided on small events like this, so I will never underestimate what it could mean to our season," said Kompany of Lampard's goal.
"Frank has brought experience - experience is not just a word you make up, it's really something that helps, like the goal he scored.
"It means keeping your head cool when you're under pressure and we're down to 10 men. How many players would've scored that goal? That's what he's proven in only a few minutes.
"The goal he scored is probably something you would have seen from him for the last 15 years in the Premier League. He's so clever, still extremely motivated and ultimately you play so many competitions, you need all the guys to be there, and he's another who will make our team stronger."
As things stand, Chelsea remain five points clear of Manchester City, although the home side were glad of a draw after having full-back Pablo Zabaleta sent off earlier in the game. It does mean however that Manuel Pellegrini's side are now without a win in their last four games.
Lampard will depart from the Etihad Stadium in January to begin life with New York City FC, although the idea of extending his loan spell with Manchester City has been mooted.
Kompany believes that the loan spell will be mutually beneficial for both parties as the Citizens look to retain their Premier League title while Lampard seeks out match fitness.
"I think it goes both ways," said Kompany. "He needed what we can offer him and we need what he can bring to us as well, so both ways. If you talk to him I reckon that's how he sees it as well and obviously today was just the icing on the cake."
Manchester City travel to Hull next weekend while Chelsea take on Aston Villa at Stamford Bridge.
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