Thursday 29 September 2016

Pellegrini: Manchester City have answered the critics

Published 12/04/2016 | 22:35

Manchester City's Chilean manager Manuel Pellegrini (C) congratulates Manchester City's English goalkeeper Joe Hart (L) after winning the UEFA Champions league quarter-final second leg football match between Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain at the Etihad stadium in Manchester on April 12, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / OLI SCARFFOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images
Manchester City's Chilean manager Manuel Pellegrini (C) congratulates Manchester City's English goalkeeper Joe Hart (L) after winning the UEFA Champions league quarter-final second leg football match between Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain at the Etihad stadium in Manchester on April 12, 2016. / AFP PHOTO / OLI SCARFFOLI SCARFF/AFP/Getty Images

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini believes his side answered their critics as they cruised into the Champions League semi-finals after a comfortable 3-2 aggregate win against Paris Saint-Germain at the Etihad Stadium.

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After a 2-2 draw in the first leg, City stormed into the last four for the first time in their history after Kevin De Bruyne goal secured the win, with Pellegrini suggesting his side silenced the doubters who suggested they could not shine in Europe’s elite competition.

“I never understand the criticism we get,” he told BT Sport. “We beat Bayern Munich in my first season and lost against Barcelona in the round-of-16.

“In the second season, we didn't play well but beat Bayern Munich again and Roma, then we lost to Barca again. This season we won the group and now we beat PSG. I really don't understand the criticism, but now we are in the semi-final, so maybe the criticism will stop.”

Pellegrini was content with his side’s display, as they showed composure against a disappointing PSG side to keep their hitherto disappointing season alive.

“I am very satisfied, not only because we won the game and qualified for the semi-finals, but because we won in the style of play we want,” he added. “We didn't want to draw 0-0, we showed from the start we wanted to beat PSG.

“Kevin de Bruyne is an important player for us, we deserved a goal before he scored. We dominated that game from the beginning until the end.”

De Bruyne was equally laid back as he reflected on City’s triumph, with his huge price tag following his move to the Etihad Stadium last summer repaid with a priceless Champions League goal.

“It feels great. We played a very good game,” said the Belgian winger. “Everyone was fighting and PSG didn’t make a lot of chances. We deserved to go through.

“In the first half, we deserved already to be ahead. In the second half, we played a good game and created some chances. I’m glad I scored.”

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