Man City v West Brom
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Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has insisted his side’s faltering season is not a disaster.
Pellegrini also claims he is still enjoying life at the Etihad Stadium even though he has been heavily criticised in recent weeks and pressure is mounting.
City’s midweek Champions League exit to Barcelona, coming soon after Burnley appeared to deal a fatal blow to their Premier League title bid, has brought much scrutiny of their overall campaign.
Many believe Pellegrini now to be fighting for his position but the Chilean feels, given the toughness of the competition, his side are still in reasonable shape.
He said: “Everyone can say what they want to say or what they think will happen. The most important thing for me is to work in the same way we are doing because I think we are doing well.
“Maybe other people don’t think how difficult it can be to do it because in England we have very strong teams in every year. It is not easy to win a double.
Pellegrini’s side have won just three of their last 12 games in all competitions, going out of the FA Cup as well as falling six points behind Chelsea – having played a game more – in the Premier League.
Asked if he enjoys it at City, Pellegrini said: “Of course. Every day I enjoy it. If you cannot enjoy playing Champions League against Barcelona, fighting for the title in the Premier League, being with this team, being in the best league in the world, if you don’t enjoy it, you must see a doctor.”
Pellegrini is frustrated by his side’s recent difficulties but it has not dimmed his or the club’s ambition.
He said: “To try to win the Champions League is a target in the future. Every team that wants to be a big team must win the Champions League, but it is not easy to win it.
“It is very important to live in the domestic game. You must see your domestic games and try always to be involved for the title every year.
City will look to bounce back as they host West Brom today. With Chelsea not playing until Sunday, they can at least temporarily cut the deficit at the top.
But they will have to do so without key midfielder Yaya Toure, who has an Achilles injury.
Fellow midfielder James Milner is also set to miss out with the same knee problem that affected him against Burnley last weekend and Aleksandar Kolarov also has a muscle injury.
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