Manuel Pellegrini admitted that he was disappointed with Manchester City’s 1-1 draw against Everton.
Everton came from behind to snatch a point against Manchester City at the Goodison Park. The draw gives Everton their first point in five games. Steven Naismith was the hero for The Toffees as the midfielder cancelled out Fernandinho‘s opener to frustrate Manchester City.
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini voiced his disappointment over the result. The manager was expecting a tough game away from home, but he believed that Manchester City had enough opportunities to put the game to bed in the first half.
Pellegrini said: “We are not happy with a point because we had three or four clear chances in the first 25 minutes which could have decided the game. But we didn’t finish well so after that, the second half was closer and Everton improved in their performance, and scored from a set piece.
“If you had said at the beginning of the game we would draw against Everton away, then maybe it is not a bad result, but because we had so many chances we are not happy with the draw.”
He added: “I expected a very tough game because they are a very good team with very good players. They improved a lot in the second half so if you ask me about the second half I think a draw is normal, but they had their first chance in the 43rd minute and before that we had a lot of chances to score.”
Most of the first half saw Everton sit back and defend in their own half. It was David Silva who was trying to find a way through their defence with his close control and deft passing. However, in the absence of Dzeko and Aguero, City lacked the cutting edge to finish the chances set up by the Spaniard.
Nine minutes into the game, Jovetic shot too high from a Silva pass and then Jesus Navas missed an even more inviting opportunity after a Phil Jagielka blunder had given Silva time to create the chance. Despite several attempts, City failed to test Everton’s reserve goalkeeper Robles.
Everton nearly scored the first goal of the game on the stroke of the interval. Muhamed Besic, who was frustrating the home fans with constantly passing sideways and occasionally into touch, played a ball forward for once and allowed Seamus Coleman to put Romelu Lukaku clear on goal. However, Joe Hart came out smartly and made himself big to save the shot only for Seamus Coleman to strike the bar from 25 yards off the rebound.
After 70 minutes, the Goodison Park was treated to two consecutive goals. The first one came for the away side when Pablo Zabaleta’s tackle on Lukaku freed Fernandinho to set up the first. David Silva looked certain to score but had his shot deflected, only for Fernandinho to head it home comfortably. It looked like the Brazilian’s goal would be the only one of the game but Everton had other plans. Baines flighted in a diagonal cross from a free-kick, one that Hart thought he could reach but realised too late he could not, and Naismith read the situation perfectly in getting to the ball first to glance a header past the goalkeeper.
Everton manager Roberto Martinez seemed happy with the performance of his side and congratulated the linesman for his decision of not calling the first goal as offside.
“Once they scored we upped the tempo and looked really strong at the end,” Martinez said. “It was a great reaction and a really positive performance. We allowed City too much space in the first half, even though we defended our area well. When they scored I thought it must have been offside because I couldn’t see two players behind Joel Robles, but having seen replays I must congratulate the linesman in getting his decision spot on.”
The game also saw Sergio Aguero return to action in the last twenty minutes. However, coming back from injury, Aguero was understandably not at his sharpest.