Champions League: Man City Lucky To Win – Manuel Pellegrini
Manchester City did not deserve their last-minute Champions League victory at Borussia Monchengladbach, says Blues manager Manuel Pellegrini.
Sergio Aguero’s penalty earned a 2-1 win, with keeper Joe Hart saving a penalty before the Germans took a 1-0 second-half lead.
Nicolas Otamendi scored the equaliser as City recovered from the 2-1 loss to Juventus in their opening Group D game.
“We had a bit of luck to win the game,” said the 62-year-old Chilean.
City had been beaten in three of their four previous matches in all competitions, including Premier League losses to West Ham and Tottenham as well as the defeat by the Italian champions.
“Against Juventus and West Ham we didn’t deserve to lose and maybe today we didn’t deserve to win but we did,” added Pellegrini.
But the victory – only the third in their past 12 Champions League matches – boosted their hopes of reaching the knockout stage for a third successive season under Pellegrini.
City remain third in the group after two matches, level on three points with Spanish side Sevilla and three adrift of Juve.
England international Hart said his team were below their best against Monchengladbach, but disagreed with his manager about the final result.
“We were disjointed as we had been in the last few games, but we deserved to win,” said the 28-year-old.
“We had some really good chances. It may have come late but Sergio Aguero is a cool guy and he will score.
“They’ve got some good movement – Kevin de Bruyne warned us about them. They’ve a very fit team and they work themselves into the ground.
“We profited when they were a little bit tired at the end. They made a few mistakes and we kept our quality.”
Now Pellegrini hopes his squad – who were missing defender and captain Vincent Kompany through injury and saw midfielder Yaya Toure taken off at half-time – can get through to the international break without picking up any more knocks.
His players will link up with their national squads after Saturday’s home league match against Newcastle.
“We need the international break because we have eight injured players and we don’t have many options,” he added.
“It is important for the players to beat Newcastle on Saturday and then after that we have 15 days.”