De Jong talks up City prospects

Manchester City midfielder Nigel de Jong believes his club’s victory in the pre-season Dublin Super Cup bodes well for the campaign ahead.City defeated a League of Ireland XI 3-0 on Saturday, before seeing off Serie A runners-up Inter Milan by the same score-line a day later.

Set to compete in the Champions League for the first time and now seen as genuine challengers for the English Premier League title, De Jong can sense the optimism among his teammates.

“Everybody’s excited to start the new season, especially after the win at the tournament today,” De Jong said.

“We just have to see how it goes and like I said everybody’s excited for the new season and we have to fight for every competition.”

“We’ll see at the end if we get some silverware.”

The newest addition to City’s expensively assembled squad is Argentina forward Sergio Aguero, who joined from Atletico Madrid last week for a reported fee of 35 million pounds.

Netherlands international De Jong believes such a costly outlay is an indication of the club’s intent to compete on all fronts in 2011/12.

“It’s a big signing,” he said.

“It’s a statement as well that we are serious contenders for every competition we’re in.”

“Every year is the same pressure for us. With spending money comes high expectations so we know that as a group and we just have to make sure we stick together.”

“And you need to add some extra power to your squad as well if you want to remain and fight in every competition.”

The biggest cloud on City’s horizon is the uncertain future of striker Carlos Tevez, who captained the team last season and finished as top scorer.

Tevez has sought a move away from Manchester to be closer to his family in Argentina.

Ivory Coast midfielder Yaya Toure has sympathy for his teammate, but remains hopeful the 27-year-old can contribute to the City cause in the coming season.

“We all know his situation with his family and when he plays he’s not enjoying it because he’s not happy without his family,” Toure said.

“It’s a difficult situation. I don’t want to express my feelings about that, but if Carlos Tevez stays with us it will be fantastic as we’ve signed Aguero who plays in the (Argentina) national team with him.”