Joleon Lescott feels Manchester City were provided with conclusive proof of their arrival at the Premier League's top-table by all the talk of a crisis within the Blues camp.

After blazing a trail with their swashbuckling style for the first third of the season, Lescott found it rather amusing that Monday's trip to Wigan was being billed as the acid test of City's title credentials.

Three defeats in five games meant City, according to some, were a club in freefall, which all came as a shock to Lescott and his team-mates, who said: "It has been funny. None of the boys thought we were cracking or something was going wrong. Then suddenly a big thing is made of it in the media."

He added: "It was crazy. We sat there and thought: `Wow, we must have arrived`.

"People were saying we weren't going to win the league and we are thinking: 'Hold on a minute, we have lost two cup games'. I don't think we are doing too badly."

The major talking point from Monday's victory at Wigan was Roberto Mancini's touchline antics, which are evidently taking on a life of their own and which the Italian would be well advised to curb if he is to stop himself ending up in the kind of disciplinary strife he seems so anxious to avoid.

And heading into a weekend in which they face third-placed Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium on Sunday, and will finish only half an hour before United tackle Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium, City could do with what Mancini likes to refer to as a "quiet" period to get on with their business.

On the Tottenham game, the England defender added: "Tottenham have been talking us up but we haven't mentioned any other team. We have just concentrated on our own performances and results.

"It is not deliberate to avoid the psychology. It is just something we have to do. We know if we win on Sunday it would open up a gap between us and them. But no disrespect to Spurs, our main rivals are Manchester United.

"They are second in the league and our focus should always be on the team immediately behind us. As much as the points on Sunday are vital because of the gap to Spurs, they will be more important to pull away from Manchester United."

Source: PA