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Pellegrini: Players not fresh

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini blamed tiredness for his side's below-par performance against Crystal Palace.

Last Updated: 30/12/13 at 10:21 Post Comment    Bet with SkyBet  Premier League Winner 13/14 Win Outright: Manchester City 9/4

Manuel Pellegrini: Blamed tiredness for display in win over Crystal Palace

Manuel Pellegrini: Blamed tiredness for display in win over Crystal Palace

Pellegrini made six changes to his starting line-up as City laboured to victory over relegation-threatened Palace with Edin Dzeko scoring the all-important winning goal.

The Chilean insists he did not treat the game lightly by making so many changes and reiterated his disappointment at being forced to play two games in 48 hours after their Boxing Day victory over Liverpool.

City struggled to break down Palace for long periods of the game and Pellegrini admits he was frustrated by the away side's defensive tactics.

"Yes, of course I was very concerned," Pellegrini told Sky Sports. "Before the match I said when we finished against Liverpool, 48 hours it is impossible to recover for players.

"We didn't have our team fresh and it is very difficult when just one team want to play and the other just wants to defend so that was the game we saw today. That is not what we are used to do at the Etihad.

"We also had a lot of chances to score but I repeat it is very difficult to attack when the other team is with ten players in their own box. Maybe on some counter attacks and corners they had chances."

Pellegrini also played down fears over Joe Hart's eye injury after he picked up a nasty cut in a challenge with Cameron Jerome.

"Yes, he has a cut in his eye, but he never had any problem [to play on]."

The win moved City to the top of the table for 24 hours at least, but Pellegrini insists the title race will go to the wire.

"I repeat, there are six or seven teams that will continue fighting for the title to the end," added Pellegrini.

"Of the last eight games we have won seven and drawn one and recovered the distance Arsenal had on our team, but we continue next Wednesday [at Swansea] and the second half of the season will be very difficult for all of us."

Bet with SkyBet  Premier League Winner 13/14 Win Outright: Manchester City 9/4

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I

may well get slated by other United fans for this, but out of the three contenders, I'd far prefer Liverpool to win the title. Yes some elements of their fanbase can be a bit OTT, yes they're our biggest rivals and yes it will make our poor season feel even more like the end of an era (Fergie's gone, Liverpool are back on top). However I just have to applaud Brendan Rodgers and the way he's turned Liverpool around in just a couple of seasons. It...

Mike_Christie
Please Stop Telling Us What To Think

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ooray! We are all excited now, we beat a very mediocre team! With all due respect to WHU supporters, not winning that game shouldn't even be a consideration. This is the problem, there is no winning mentality at the Emirates - we're all congratulating ourselves beating a team that we have a winning record against.

TheWhiz
Wenger hails important win

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s this meant to be an aspiration for United supporters? Moyes mediocrity strikes again. I see the Bayern boys don't want to sign for him, and his reputation amongst the senior European coaches make other key signings unlikely.

redbornandbred
De Gea's Europa League target

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