Manuel Pellegrini said injury fears forced him to withdraw five-goal striker Sergio Aguero in Manchester City’s 6-1 demolition of Newcastle.
Manchester City striker Aguero became the fifth player to score five goals in a single Premier League game – to join an elite set of names – but with just 62 minutes on the clock when netting his fifth, he had plenty of time in reserve to become the first player to notch a double hat-trick.
However, Aguero was denied the chance after being substituted shortly after and Pellegrini said he was happy with his side’s performance.
“I am very happy because that was the reaction of a team who normally wants to play in this style. We want to try to score the most amount of goals.
“I like to see my teams play in this way – not just score one goal or when we get the second just go back. I think it is important for fans to see a team scoring and enjoying the game.
“It was very important for us to be 1-1 before we finished the first half. I said at half-time we needed to be a little calmer.”
“Sergio Aguero is different. In other games he was maybe having a lot of chances but not scoring, but today he returned to his normal amount of chances he creates but this time he scored.
“He was not upset about going off. He was having treatment at half time and it was a risk for him to finish the whole game.
“I always say it is important to be the leader on the table but we must be at the top in May. It was important to come back with a victory and not drop points at home. In November we play five games at home so this gives trust to the players.”
Fellow goalscorer Kevin De Bruyne was also quick to pay tribute to Aguero’s haul, and the Belgian said after the game: “Sergio Aguero can score goals out of nothing. It is great to have him in the team obviously.
“I am happy with the second half and how I played, not so much the first. It was a bit difficult but then I just tried to play better.”
City captain Vincent Kompany was forced to sit out the game, but he too was quick to tweet his appreciation for the City striker, hailing the player as “world class”.
— Vincent Kompany (@VincentKompany) October 3, 2015
And Aguero himself tweeted:
Very happy about the five goals and the victory. Thank you all for the encouragement and support. C’mon, City! — Sergio Kun Aguero (@aguerosergiokun) October 3, 2015