Pellegrini praises Pantilimon

Manuel Pellegrini was full of praise for goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon after he was named man of the match in the 2-0 win over Newcastle - but will not decide who will start in goal for Manchester City against Norwich on Saturday.

Last Updated: 31/10/13 at 11:37 Post Comment

Manuel Pellegrini: Impressed by goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon

Manuel Pellegrini: Impressed by goalkeeper Costel Pantilimon

The Romanian was brought in to replace Joe Hart in City's goal and pulled off several fine saves to keep the score at 0-0 into extra time.

He could now replace under-fire Hart in City's Premier League game at the weekend.

Pellegrini was not surprised by his performance.

He said: "Pantilimon has always had my trust and that of the team.

"He is a good player, that's why he is here. He may not have played too much because Joe Hart plays last year and this year but I trust him to play.

"I think for him and the team to keep a clean sheet today was important."

Pellegrini insisted, however, that he has yet to determine Hart's fate.

Pantilimon was hardly overworked on Wednesday night but did everything that was required of him when called upon.

He got down well while partially unsighted to paw a Shola Ameobi effort wide in the first half and then, with the scores still level early in added time, the Romanian came out to meet Papiss Cisse and stood firm to make a strong save.

That latter intervention was picked out by home manager Alan Pardew as the key moment of the match, giving City the platform to secure passage to the quarter-finals via goals from Alvaro Negredo and Edin Dzeko.

The focus on the under-pressure Hart was inevitable, but Pellegrini did little to fan the flames around England's number one.

While he stopped short of guaranteeing a return to the starting XI against Norwich on Saturday, he also declined to anoint Pantilimon as his successor.

"He is a very good goalkeeper and he normally plays in the Capital One Cup and the FA Cup," said Pellegrini.

"This was a very important match for him. But I will start to think about the game against Norwich on Thursday. Today I was just thinking about winning this match.

"I think that we will talk tomorrow (about the team selection). One goalkeeper can play but the other will have our full support. We will think about it."

Pressed for further details about Hart's standing, Pellegrini responded curtly: "I have just told you I will think about that tomorrow."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

H

e made his power play to try and get Sheikhy to raise his wages or trade him to PSG. PSG were probably not interested and he is stuck with no cake and no vacation. @Jay_D> Surely you jest about FFP being real, right? All Platini is doing is making billionaries pay measly fines, so he and his cronies can get rich. If a fool can pay 50 mil for David Luiz, he will happily pay some fine to UEFA. FFP has failed as for it to succeed UEFA had to take it...

Synergy
Toure: I am staying with City

G

uess we can expect Toure's explanation of his behaviour around the same time Pete Townshend publishes his book then.

ceeps
Toure: I am staying with City

D

amn you Yaya, don't scare me like that! I only ate the icing. I didn't eat the soft and scrumptious middle - I will buy you another cake!

MCFC87
Toure: I am staying with City

Footer 365

Premier League: Brendan Rodgers insists Liverpool will move on without Luis Suarez

Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insists there is no bad blood between the club and the outgoing Luis Suarez.

Transfer news: Liverpool appear to be close to completing a deal for Loic Remy

Liverpool are closing in on the signing of Loic Remy with the French forward reportedly having his medical in Boston.

Manchester United still global giant and prepared to spend big insists Ed Woodward

Manchester United executive vice chairman Ed Woodward insists the club are still the biggest in the world.

Mail Box

Anyone But Rooney. Or Baines. Or Hart.

There isn't a great deal of excitement in the Mailbox regarding England's potential new captain, but we have good stuff on Gerrard's development and a one club man team...

Goodbye Patrice And Farewell Steven...

Man United fans say a fond farewell to Patrice Evra in the mailbox while there are also thoughts on Steven Gerrard's retirement from England duty. Plus, some rare cricket bantz...

© 2014 British Sky Broadcasting Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media property