Manchester City winger Raheem Sterling says the club's players are ready to fight for a place at the top of the Premier League table, ahead of Saturday's clash with Chelsea at the Etihad Stadium.
Chelsea lead the Premier League by a solitary point from Liverpool, with City in third place behind the Reds on goal difference.
City boss Pep Guardiola has made it clear to Sterling and the rest of the City squad that they will continue to play a possession-based style, but the former Liverpool player believes their commitment to a passing shouldn't be confused with reluctance to grind out results.
"You're not going to win every game 4-0, 5-0. There are going to be games when you only win 1-0, 2-0 and games when you have to fight to get a goal in the last few minutes," Sterling said.
"We're together as a whole and we know we can grind out a result. That's the most important thing.
"So it's a credit to the team that we stuck in there to get the win at Burnley and put us in a position where when we play Chelsea we could go above them.
"Most of the teams that cause problems by playing more direct with long balls, etc probably think we don't fancy it, but we want to win the league so we're up for a fight."
Saturday's match signals the start of a key run of fixtures on in the Premier League for the Citizens, with matches against Arsenal and Liverpool also on the horizon before the New Year.
"This month is so important, until the end of the year, and not just those teams. We play against the last champions, Leicester, next week and Watford at home and the other ones [Hull]," Guardiola said.
"Of course we're going to play two games at home against two real good teams and we're going to see our level, but I'm not thinking about what happens if we win or we don't win the games. I'm most thinking about what will be our level and if we will be able to fight until the last."