Manchester City manager Roberto Mancini says Manchester United deserve to win the Premier League.
United will regain the title if they manage to
beat Aston Villa at Old Trafford on Monday.
"They deserve to win this title because we lost a lot of points in games we didn't deserve to lose," said Mancini
after City's 3-1 loss at Tottenham.
"But United won a lot of games in a row with goals and deserve to win the title."
Manchester City lost for the first time this season after taking the lead in the Premier League. They had won 20 of the previous 22.
Defending champions City led 1-0 at White Hart Lane before conceding three quickfire second-half goals having missed several chances.
"We had chances to score and not scoring cost us the game," added the Italian. "Today was the mirror of our season."
Mancini guided City to their first domestic title in 42 years last season as they overturned an eight-point deficit on United with six matches remaining.
But they faced an even bigger task to retain their crown as they trailed United by 13 points, with six games left to play, before the match at White Hart Lane.
The Blues looked set to record a comfortable win after Samir Nasri's early strike put them in command, but a second-half collapse allowed Spurs to snatch a dramatic win.
Clint Dempsey tapped in Gareth Bale's cross at the far post and Jermain Defoe fired in a second before Bale added the third.
Despite conceding three goals at White Hart Lane, City still have the best defensive record in the Premier League and Mancini admits their lack of goals has cost them the title.
City have netted 59 goals in their 33 games, with Manchester United, Arsenal, Chelsea and Liverpool all outscoring Mancini's team.
"I can't believe we lost because we had the game under control after playing very well for 80 minutes," added the Italian.
"Instead we didn't score and then we made two big mistakes which, for us, was strange.
"Tottenham's first and second goals were simple. You can't concede two goals like that."