Mikko Hirvonen says he is hoping to wrap up second in the WRC standings with a strong showing in Italy next weekend.

The Finn has finished second on eight occasions this season but has yet to taste victory, having been stripped of a win in Portugal.

Hirvonen can wrap up second in the standings with a podium finish in Sardinia and having finished second for the past five years, he heads into the event optimistic of achieving his aim.

"This year, finally, I would love to win," he said. "Although third position would be enough to make sure I finish as runner-up in the World Championship, I'd rather do it in style.

"We have done an awful lot of work with the team to try and match my driving style to the set-up of the DS3 WRC. After having made a breakthrough on tarmac at the last rally, I hope to improve further on gravel."

With both championship titles having been secured in France, team boss Yves Matton said he would love to see Hirvonen get the victory that has eluded him thus far.

"We have just experienced one of the highlights of our professional lives at the Rallye de France," he said. "But there are still two events left to complete, and the pressure is by no means off for them.

"Although it is not part of the mindset of the people who work at Citroen Racing, I asked the team not to ease off. Our goal for this rally is clear: we will be aiming for our sixth one-two finish of the season! As ever, our crews will be free to run the race as they see fit.

"I hope Mikko will be able to fight for the win. He deserves it, because we owe him a lot for the two titles we have won this season."