Manchester City manager Pellegrini denies feeling the heat heading into derby with Manchester United

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City have yet to hit top gear this season. Although the Premier League champions are only six points shy of leaders Chelsea after nine games, they are struggling in the Champions League, while they exited the Capital One Cup at the hands of an under-strength Newcastle in midweek.

Pellegrini, however, appears calm over the situation.

"I don't know what pressure [there is]," said the 61-year-old.

"I think it is very difficult to analyse the season when it is just in October, when you have just played nine Premier League games and you don't know whether or not you are going to qualify in the Champions League.

"It is the reality that we are eliminated from the Capital One Cup - but last year we were the only [title-contending] team to continue in the Capital One, so maybe the other teams will have more difficulties this season when they have to play so many games."

The Chilean pointed out his team were in a similar situation last term before turning it around to claim League honours.

"If I go [back] one year, it was exactly the same. Around the end of October, we had the same questions, and I answered the same way.

"It is the way we must play. We will continue doing the same way."

He also has faith the Citizens can cope in the absence of star playmaker David Silva, who has been ruled out for around three weeks with a knee injury.

"David has a problem in his ligament. Maybe he will be out around three weeks, so he will not be available for the derby.

"He is a very important player but I always say the same thing, we have a squad and we have to replace him with another player.

"I think we are a team, and in that team we need top players in top performance always, because that is the best way to play."