Man City win an ‘important achievement’, says Pellegrini

Date published: Tuesday 15th March 2016 10:36

Manuel Pellegrini: Believes he would have been replaced no matter what

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini says qualifying for the quarter-finals of the Champions League for the first time is a “very important achievement” for the club. 

A goalless draw against Dynamo Kiev at the Etihad Stadium was enough to send City through after a 3-1 first-leg victory in Kiev.

The match was overshadowed by injuries to both captain Vincent Kompany and Nicolas Otamendi, a huge blow for Pellegrini with the Manchester derby coming up this weekend in a crucial Premier League clash.

Pellegrini confirmed that a reoccurring calf problem forced Kompany off after a matter of minutes, but the Chilean was more positive about his side seeing out the tie to qualify for the last eight.

Speaking after the match, Pellegrini said: “It was a tactical game, we didn’t take any risks just to qualify and waited to see if they gave any space. They played a quiet game.

“It was important for us to keep the ball and not let them create chances. They knew before the game they had to score three goals.

“Unfortunately for Vincent Kompany, he has a calf problem again in his muscle so we will see how it is tomorrow. Nicolas Otamendi has had a kick and hopefully can recover in the next couple of days.

“It is difficult for Kompany because he came back very well, he played six games in-a-row but unfortunately for him he couldn’t continue.

“It is a very important achievement for the club. Before we could not do it, we were very unlucky. It is not normal to play against Barcelona twice in the last-16. This is a club that is growing and continue to develop as a big club.

“We are going to see which is the best way to play. We normally are a team who always score so we get criticism about not keeping clean sheets. We have kept three clean sheets for three games in-a-row now.

“We will see the next game. In this knockout round, you should know how to play tactical games and we will see how far we can go.”

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