One down, two to go for Man City
MANUEL Pellegrini has insisted Manchester City still have plenty of work to do to wrap up a second English title in three years, despite their hopes being in their own hands.
With their 3-2 win at Everton on Saturday, City moved to the top of the Premier League table for the first time since early February.
Only home games against Aston Villa on Wednesday and West Ham on Sunday - the final day of the league season - stand between City and the trophy.
Their situation had looked bleak when they lost at Liverpool and drew at home with Sunderland, but three consecutive wins and Chelsea's recent victory at Anfield have given City the initiative again.
Saturday's trip to Goodison Park had been seen as the key match in City's hopes, but Pellegrini told his players after the final whistle not to slip now.
"It was a testing moment but we haven't finished yet," said the City manager.
"We've just won one of the three games that we must win to win the title...
"I was talking with the players, especially after we lost against Liverpool, and I said that the title was not over and we must continue playing.
"I never try to think in a negative way. We have to win two games more, a lot can happen and we will prepare for Aston Villa and, at the end of the season, we'll analyse how the season was.
"Three points is a good step towards trying to win the title."
Everton's hopes of Champions League football ended with their defeat, but they are now guaranteed fifth spot and a Europa League place.
Meanwhile, the door slammed shut on Cardiff City and Fulham as crushing away defeats condemned both clubs to relegation from the Premier League on Saturday, while rejuvenated Sunderland moved to the brink of survival.
Sunderland's impressive burst of form continued as they earned a 1-0 win at Manchester United - a result that took them beyond the reach of Cardiff, 3-0 losers at Newcastle United, and Fulham, who were crushed 4-1 at Stoke City.