Pellegrini savours an “important” first title
- 02 March 2014 17:21
- Posted by @markbooth_mcfc
A first trophy in England at the first time of asking – Manuel Pellegrini certainly didn’t take long to adjust to life at City.
The Chilean was delighted with the manner of the 3-1 comeback victory over Sunderland and paid tribute to his players’ patience and trust in each other and his gameplan.
Pellegrini believes that lifting the Capital One Cup could also provide an important psychological boost to the team and an advantage in their pursuit of three more trophies.
"We were a goal down at half-time and it was important for them to be calm, to be patient,” the 60-year old declared.
"What happened last year in the FA Cup final maybe played on their minds in the first half but the most important thing was for them to trust each other and to keep playing exactly the same.
“It was not easy to be one goal down against Sunderland – they played a very good match and I congratulate Gus and all of his players for that - they proved that they deserved to be in the final, they defended really well.
"We had the patience to continue trying to find space - maybe we were not on our best day but we came through."
“It gives us a lot of confidence. When you have a chance to win a title and you don’t do it, maybe you don’t think the same way. We are the only club who has the chance trying to win all of the competitions. If you have a chance to win the first, you must do it.”
The win also allowed the team to banish bad memories of their last trip to Wembley in May.
While it looked for a while as though history would repeat itself when Fabio Borini fired the Black Cats into the lead, Pellegrini believes that the way his squad reacted, as a team, demonstrated that they had improved since that fateful day.
“For such an important club, to fail for the second time is not good. Today it was very important for us to win after what happened last year,” Manuel said.
“We had maybe not our best day in creating space but all of the team worked together without the ball – Sunderland didn’t have many chances to score - they scored with their first chance.
“It’s hard to play one goal down, you play against the time, against the opponents. Today they played the way they must play.
“We will evaluate the season in May – we won today one trophy, I don’t think that anybody can be allowed to think that’s enough at a club like this – we want to beat Wigan on Saturday, then we will be in the semi-final again at Wembley in the FA Cup.
“We have a lot of respect for Wigan – we know what they did to us last year, it will not be an easy game for sure."
“You can never be satisfied with just one trophy with so many good players.”
Pellegrini’s Sunderland counterpart Gus Poyet was proud of his side despite the scoreline and admitted that City’s quality in front of goal was decisive.
“I saw my team today, so I’m proud of them - I didn’t want any mistakes, any bad decisions, any sendings off, any own goals, and we didn’t so we had the best shot we could have,” the Uruguayan reflected.
“For 45 minutes we were more than decent. But if you have Yaya Toure and he scores from 35 yards, maybe I need to play two goalkeepers and he wouldn’t have scored.
“The quality decided the game – they were two wonder finishes.”