Manchester City’s Manuel Pellegrini says he never doubted Yaya Touré

• Pellegrini hails Aston Villa win as best display of season
• Touré did not want to leave, says City manager
• Aston Villa 0-2 Manchester City

Manuel Pellegrini savoured what he deemed Manchester City’s best performance of the season after Yaya Touré provided the inspiration for their 2-0 win at Aston Villa with his first league goal of the campaign. The defending champions had to wait until the 82nd minute to score at Villa Park before Touré and Sergio Agüero clinched the win that took them up to second in the table.

“When we had just eight minutes to finish the game you are a little bit worried but we deserved to win,” Pellegrini said: “We had a lot of clear chances to score. I think we played the best game of the season, complete in all senses with possession, the chances, the way we defend, the intensity [with which] we recover the ball and the way we work.”

Touré endured a summer of speculation after suggesting he wanted to leave the Etihad Stadium before beginning the season with below-par performances following the death of his younger brother, Ibrahim, in June.

But Pellegrini said: “Maybe like any player he can have better games or not so good games but I never had any doubts about him. He has a lot of problem in his private life but he didn’t want to go anywhere. He didn’t have any problems with the club. He will continue to be an important player.”

Touré, whose only previous goal this season was a penalty against Sheffield Wednesday, enjoyed his first league strike since May. “I think it was amazing,” he said. The midfielder admitted he had struggled during a gruelling schedule, adding: “It’s not so easy because you have to play every three days. I’m not a machine, I’m a man, but it’s important to keep things going and I’ll just do my best to win things again this season.”

City will assess the midfielder Fernandinho’s hamstring problem on Sunday after he hobbled off.


Richard Jolly at Villa Park

The GuardianTramp

Related Content

Article image
Manchester City’s Manuel Pellegrini talks candidly about Pep Guardiola
Manchester City’s Manuel Pellegrini said Pep Guardiola would do ‘a good job at City – in the future’

Paul Wilson

19, Dec, 2015 @11:13 PM

Article image
Manuel Pellegrini denies Manchester City’s late return caused Boro shock
Manuel Pellegrini denied that his team’s late return from warm-weather training in Abu Dhabi was a factor in their shock FA Cup defeat at the hands of the Championship side Middlesbrough

Paul Wilson at the Etihad Stadium

24, Jan, 2015 @6:36 PM

Article image
Manchester City’s Manuel Pellegrini hopes consistency can reel in Chelsea
Manchester City manager has said his side lost the title last season because they dropped too many points against the weaker sides, a problem Chelsea did not have

Paul Wilson

15, Aug, 2015 @9:30 PM

Article image
Manchester City’s tight fit forces Manuel Pellegrini to cut his cloth
Manuel Pellegrini said he had no option but to play a weakened side against Chelsea in the FA Cup on Sunday to keep top players fresh for two ‘big’ games

Paul Wilson

20, Feb, 2016 @10:30 PM

Article image
Manchester City’s Manuel Pellegrini won’t concede title after Burnley loss
Manuel Pellegrini refused to concede the title to Chelsea after Manchester City’s 1-0 defeat at Burnley cost his side more ground at the top of the Premier League table

Paul Wilson at Turf Moor

14, Mar, 2015 @9:51 PM

Article image
Manuel Pellegrini says risk brought Manchester City reward at Watford
Manuel Pellegrini believes Manchester City’s comeback win against Watford will restore his side’s confidence in away games after almost four months without a win on the road

Jacob Steinberg at Vicarage Road

02, Jan, 2016 @9:39 PM

Article image
Manuel Pellegrini says Manchester City committed tactical fouls in rout
Manuel Pellegrini says Manchester City’s players committed fouls as a matter of policy to stop West Ham in their tracks

Barney Ronay at the London Stadium

10, Aug, 2019 @3:33 PM

Article image
Manchester City committed to win against Juventus, says Manuel Pellegrini
Manchester City have already qualified for the Champions League knockout stage but Manuel Pellegrini is determined to top the table with a victory at Juventus on Wednesday

Paul Wilson

22, Nov, 2015 @10:46 AM

Article image
Manuel Pellegrini says Europa League would be disaster for Manchester City
The Manchester City manager said the club’s owners trust him as the right man to continue in charge next season

Paul Wilson

18, Apr, 2015 @9:30 PM

Article image
Manuel Pellegrini says Manchester City are hitting form at right time
The Manchester City manager, Manuel Pellegrini, has hailed his team’s recent good form and said the Christmas period will be crucial to their title hopes

Jamie Jackson at the Etihad Stadium

20, Dec, 2014 @4:42 PM