Yaya Toure says City cannot afford to drop any points if the Blues are to win a second Premier League title in three years.
Saturday’s hat-trick hero believes there is no room for error with Chelsea and Liverpool continuing to set the pace at the top and so the target is 33 points from the games that remain.
“Our mentality is to win all 11 remaining games that we have – it’s a big ask but we know it is possible with the players we have at this club,” said Yaya.
“We know difficult it is to win the Premier League and this season, it’s maybe harder than ever before.
“We have to beat United and just keep going – we showed against Fulham that we are focused and ready for the challenge ahead and know our focus is on the derby.
“Football is very strange and United, like any club, can play really well in one game and not so good the next so we can’t worry too much about their current position or form.
“We have to play our game and perform the best we can and try and take three points from the game. We want to win this title and we know we don’t have any room for any mistakes.”
Yaya, now only six goals behind top scorer Sergio Aguero and hitting peak form at just the right time. He admitted he even had his own spying mission on the Reds, while catching up with some old friends at the same time.
“I was at Old Trafford recently for the Champions League game against Olympiakos where the president is a good friend of mine,” he said.
“I have a good relationship with the club and they invited me to the game and they were very good to me and showed me a lot of respect and when people do that for me, I try and give something back to them, especially after I’d not seen them for so many years.
“Of course, the Manchester derby is a very important match for us. I do enjoy these games and I have scored a few goals against United, but while it’s fantastic when you’ve win, I don’t enjoy it so much when we’ve been beaten!
“I’m quite happy for the strikers to score the goals and I’ll be doing everything I can to make sure we come away with the victory. I know I’ve scored 20 goals so far this season but that’s not important to me – just winning this match matters and then we will move on to the next game.
“We have 11 vital games to play with Arsenal, Liverpool and Everton still to come and a lot of teams who are fighting relegation and they are all dangerous. We need to be at our best in every game we play until the end of the season.”