Can Manchester City Win the Premier League?
It is a legitimate question, especially after their 5-0 thrashing of Newcastle, that has been frequently asked but, now, with just five points separating the reigning Premier League champions and current leaders Chelsea, will Manchester City repeat history and come from behind to snatch the title away from Jose Mourinho's men?
This time last week, Manchester City found themselves seven points behind a dominant Chelsea side and it looked like securing a third title in four years was out of the question, but following the weekend's dramatic events, Pellegrini finds his team in the same position as they have been in before when they have been triumphant in the league.
City had the advantage of knowing Chelsea's result before kicking-off their evening match against Newcastle and used this to motivate them. Chelsea drew 1-1 with a relegation-threatened Burnley side following Nemanja Matic's controversial red card for his reaction to a boisterous tackle from Burnley forward Ashley Barnes, which has since been appealed against. City then produced a workmanlike performance in their clash with John Carver's lacklustre Newcastle side, who struggled to find a way into the match after conceding a penalty in the first 30 seconds.
The loss of Nemanja Matic for Chelsea could be a key factor in where the prestigious Premier League trophy is in May. Matic's performances have been crucial to Chelsea's success and the defensive midfielder is poised to miss pivotal league matches against West Ham and Southampton, and the Capital One Cup final against London rivals Tottenham.
The Serbian was resigned by Chelsea last January for £21m and first made an impact when Chelsea produced a 'Monday Night Mourinho Masterclass' as they ran out 1-0 victors in a highly-competitive fixture at the Etihad.
Meanwhile, City face a tough trip to Anfield and matches against relegation candidates Leicester and Burnley. Recent form would suggest that Liverpool could snatch a draw, or even a win against City when playing on home turf. However, victories against Leicester and Burnley will be an expectation for Pellegrini's men. Even after those few games, City could lead the table.
Although, looking at the long-term prize, City have an easier run of fixtures than title rivals Chelsea and should they go ahead in the race for the title, they will be expected to stay there.
Should the title not have been decided come the final day of the season, Pellegrini's side face a tough task as they host Champions League hopefuls Southampton at the Etihad whilst Chelsea face a Sunderland side fearing being pulled into a relegation scrap.
Despite the current positioning of the two teams who travel to the Etihad and Stamford Bridge on the final day, it all depends what happens between now and then. Southampton could either have secured a Champions League spot or become out of contention for a spot in Europe's most prestigious competition next season. However, the same rule applies to Sunderland, as Gus Poyet's side could have confirmed their Premier League status for the 9th consecutive season.
Despite this, from the knowledge of previous results this season, it is apparent that Manchester City face a tougher final day than Chelsea.
To conclude, yes, it is still very possible for Manchester City to win the league when considering the remaining matches that both teams still have to play.
But, despite the fact that both of the title challengers do not have face each other again this season, there is still a lot of points that both teams could drop and allow the other to take advantage and snatch the Premier League trophy.