Manchester City were in a terrific position on New Year’s Day. They were level on points with Chelsea at the top of the Premier League and still involved in the Champions League and the FA Cup.
Fast forward four months and Manuel Pellegrini’s men are long gone from both cup competitions and nine points behind Chelsea having played a game more. To add insult to injury, they are also below both Arsenal and Manchester United in the table.
Monday night’s 2-1 loss to Crystal Palace has ramped up the pressure on their Chilean boss after just five wins from their last 15 games in all competitions.
The slump has seen City plummet down the table and to make matters worse, they have to travel to Old Trafford to face their in-form local rivals on Sunday afternoon.
It is feasible that, should they lose the derby for the first time since December 2012, City could end next weekend just four points above Liverpool, who face Newcastle a day later.
Should this nightmare, yet relatively likely, scenario occur, City must act quickly on Pellegrini instead of sitting back and waiting until the end of the season.
The Chilean has done a good job at the Etihad since replacing Roberto Mancini, having won the title in his debut season, but a failure to win a trophy this season combined with yet enough poor showing in the Champions League means his reign appears to be drawing to a close.
They say form is temporary and class is permanent but with just six wins to their name since the turn of the year, there are doubts beginning to set in about this City side.
They must be ready to act quickly on their manager to avoid this unwanted slump turning into a full blown crisis.