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Pellegrini pleased with "important" victory

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Manuel Pellegrini declared himself happy with an important win to round off an excellent week for the English Champions.

Less than 72 hours after securing a place in the last 16 of the Champions League, City travelled to Leicester and secured a vital 1-0 win to keep pace with Chelsea at the top of the Premier League.

While City were not at their mesmerising best, Pellegrini was delighted with a professional defensive display.

Said the boss: “I am very happy because today was a difficult game for us and it was a difficult week. We had to try and qualify for the Champions League, which we did, and then we had another game within 72 hours which isn’t enough time to recover physically or mentally.

“We were very unlucky because we were without Dzeko, Aguero and Jovetic, and it is difficult to play without a striker. But we managed to score one goal.

“To win 1-0 was very important for our team and we defended very well. Normally we try to be a more attacking team, but today we couldn’t because we didn’t have the players.  But if we have to defend, we can do that well too.”

He added: “I’m very happy with the whole week and with this game.”

With Sergio Aguero and Stevan Jovetic already missing, City were dealt a further blow when Edin Dzeko was injured in the warm up.

Meanwhile, Vincent Kompany left the field in the second half after missing the previous two games with a hamstring problem.

However, Manuel was quick to point to the scoring prowess of his midfielders, particularly Frank Lampard, who converted Nasri’s cross to net the winner at the King Power Stadium.

The Chilean explained: “We are without Dzeko, Aguero and Jovetic , for maybe more than a couple of weeks. We must see how long it takes Jovetic to recover. It is a difficult situation but we will see what is the best way for us to play.

“Lampard scored again which is one of the reasons he played today, because he can score and we needed a goal.

“David Silva, Samir Nasri and the rest of the midfielders can all score so we must see during the week which is the best way to play in the future until we recover our strikers.

“Vincent had a problem with his hamstring, which is why he didn’t play on Wednesday. Today he said he was fit to play, but he couldn’t finish the game.”

Lampard stole all the post-match headlines with his 175th Premier League goal, to move level with Thierry Henry on the league’s all-time scorers list and hand City a seventh successive victory.

Questioned again on the attributes of the star midfielder, Pellegrini said: “When we made the decision for Frank to stay with us until December, I was sure he would be a very important player.

“We are very happy with him and we hope he can continue with us.” 

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