Cape Town - Manchester City midfielder Fernandinho reckons the Citizens' strength in depth may turn out to be a decisive factor in the battle for the Premier League title.
Pep Guardiola's charges eased to the top-flight silverware last season, finishing 19 points clear of runners-up Manchester United, but this campaign promises to be much more competitive.
City are at the top of the league standings after 10 games with 26 points. However, they are only ahead of Liverpool on goal difference and Chelsea are a mere two points further down, while Arsenal are four points behind the leaders.
Fernandinho expects a hard-fought battle for the title but believes City may still have the edge due to their overall squad strength.
"Chelsea and Liverpool are very good teams," the 33-year-old told ESPN Brasil.
"Our aim is to fight with them, if they are still at the top of the table in March or April. We know that the period we have coming up: November, December is really important for the squad.
"Our squad could make the difference. Everybody knows the games over Christmas are difficult, with the rhythm dropping, players tiring, it is a time when a lot of teams drop points.
"We are very focused. We know how things work in the Premier League and today [against Tottenham] was a demonstration of that."