Graeme Souness says Manchester City are under-performing and not playing like a "big team" despite beating Manchester United.
City edged local rivals United 1-0 on Sunday, with Sergio Aguero netting in the second half after Red Devils defender Chris Smalling had been sent off in the first.
Sky Sports pundit Souness, though, feels Manuel Pellegrini’s men failed to make their numerical advantage count and stumbled their way to a first win in four in all competitions.
City headed into the game on the back of a Champions League stalemate with CSKA Moscow and Premier League and Capital One Cup reverses to West Ham and Newcastle respectively.
But Souness feels that should be no excuse for a nervy performance in the derby and that City’s ‘great players’ must do more.
"This will give them a bit of confidence they badly need – but I’m disappointed I have to say that,” said Souness.
"There are such a big team with such good players but getting beat is part of football and you lose the odd game even if you are the best around.
"[The best teams] want to be back the next day if they lose but City got a bad result in Russia, a bad result against West Ham and a bad result against Newcastle.
"Big players don’t react like that and that’s my concern for City, who should be better than that and better than they were in the last 10-15 minutes against United.
Souness on Manchester City "You expected another gear to come along when they got the goal, but they got a bit frightened, subconsciously backed off a little bit and allowed United to get back into the game."
Souness on Manchester City
"They’ve got to get that confidence back quickly, show real style and dominate teams because they’ve got some great players."
Smalling, meanwhile, was given his marching orders half an hour in after receiving two yellow cards – one for obstructing City’ keeper Joe Hart and the other for a mistimed tackle on James Milner.
Souness’ fellow analyst, Jamie Redknapp, reckons the red card derailed a bright start from United but is adamant that referee Michael Oliver made the correct call to send off the “stupid” Smalling.
"The sending off had a huge impact on the game as before it United were comfortable and had different opportunities to score goals – but Smalling can have no complaints as he was stupid,” added the former midfielder.
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"There was no need for him to block Hart’s kick forward when he got the first yellow – I know he was trying to stop City attacking but he should have just run back – and he then gave himself a problem for the rest of the match.
"For his second card, he was invited to tackle when Milner’s touch wasn’t the best and he probably felt he had the pace to get there and win the ball.
"But when you you’ve been booked you can’t make that challenge; you’ve got to keep a cool head and show a bit of footballing intelligence and knowhow.
"Milner doesn’t have lightning pace like Jesus Navas so Smalling could probably have tried to hold him up but he lunged in and the referee made the right decision.”