• Premier League

Mancini tells players to take responsibility

ESPN staff
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Roberto Mancini feels it is important to get his message across © PA Photos
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Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini has defended his outspoken approach to management and said that top players should be able to cope with public criticism.

Mancini said he does not want footballers who refuse to accept responsibility when they under-perform and insisted that, while he finds fault with his players, it is in their best interests.

Whereas many managers protect their players in public, Mancini has condemned Samir Nasri and Joe Hart in recent press conferences and interviews, and he did not attempt to conceal his frustration with Mario Balotelli before the striker's sale.

But the Italian insisted that players with large amounts of talent and high earnings have a duty to give their best and is convinced his charges understand his honest and plain-spoken style of management.

Mancini said: "I'm not rude with my players. I say what I think sometimes and if I think it could be good for my players to understand they could play better, they can do more, I say this because I don't lie.

"I say what I think and sometimes it's important that a player takes responsibility because when you are a top player you earn a lot of money and you should play at 100% always."

Mancini urged his players to adopt the approach he did during his time on the pitch for Bologna, Sampdoria, Lazio and Italy.

He added: "When I was a player I always took responsibility. When I didn't play well, I said, 'Sorry I didn't play well and will do my best in the next game', and it should be like this.

"I don't like players who never think it's their fault. These players can't play with me because this is impossible. I want strong players that are upset with me when they don't play but after that show me on the pitch that they deserve to play."

While Mancini has a reputation for blaming his players, the 48-year-old insists it is because he cares so much about them and City.

He added: "I don't criticise my players after every game. I love all of my players and I can do everything for my players but I want them to do everything for the club."

Mancini said Nasri, who has been omitted from the starting line-up for the last two games, had no problem with his criticisms and has talked with the Frenchman about where he can improve.

He added: "I think that he can do better because he has quality, technique and he's strong. For me, Samir is a top player and a top player should play well in every game. Samir is one of the best players in England. He showed this with Arsenal, he showed this with us last year and also this year sometimes."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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