February 5, 2019 / 4:24 AM / in 4 months

Soccer: Next week critical for Manchester City title hopes - Silva

Soccer Football - FA Cup Fourth Round - Manchester City v Burnley - Etihad Stadium, Manchester, Britain - January 26, 2019 Manchester City's Bernardo Silva gestures Action Images via Reuters/Jason Cairnduff

(Reuters) - Manchester City’s hopes of remaining in the Premier League title race will hinge on how the defending champions negotiate the next five days with matches against Everton and Chelsea, midfielder Bernardo Silva has said.

City have 59 points from 25 games to sit three points behind league leaders Liverpool who were held to a 1-1 draw at West Ham United on Monday and Silva stressed the need for his team to capitalise when they meet Everton on Wednesday.

Pep Guardiola’s side, who could go top of the table for the first time since early December with a victory at Goodison Park, then host fourth-placed Chelsea on Sunday.

“We have two difficult games against Everton and Chelsea which we want to win. If we don’t, it’ll start getting difficult to fight for this Premier League,” Silva told reporters.

City beat Arsenal 3-1 on Sunday in a strong response to last week’s defeat by Newcastle United but Silva said there was plenty of room for improvement.

“We know we have to improve... sometimes we don’t play as well as we want to. We have to improve that, to see which mistakes we are making,” the Portuguese playmaker added.

“The atmosphere in the dressing room is fantastic, everybody is trying to help each other... so we want to be better players game by game, to try to be a better team and to try win some titles at the end of the season.”

Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru

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