Manchester City beat newly promoted Hull 2-0 at the Etihad in Saturday’s early kick off, but boy they made hard work of it.
Half time substitute Alvaro Negredo finally broke the deadlock in the 65th minute with his second goal in as many games, while captain Yaya Toure curled in a beautiful free kick in the games final minute to seal the win.
However the 2-0 scoreline didn’t reflect how Hull had played for the opening 60 minutes as the Tigers had three glorious chances to open the scoring in the first half. They also thwarted City with reoslute defending and Steve Bruce will be disappointed that his team couldn’t snatch a point.
Despite the win, Manchester City’s Chilean manager Manuel Pellegrini believes his side have to do better.
“First of all, the most important thing was the points,” Pellegrini said. “In pre-season we tried to work on different things, we experimented – when we play in the Premier League, think more about the three points, so I am very pleased to win. We must improve though, we had many difficulties in the first-half.”
Pellegrini thought a hangover from City’s shock defeat to Cardiff last Sunday affected his players but was nonetheless pleased with a second-straight shutout at home.
“The defeat against Cardiff could be one of the things that affected us, in the first-half we were without trust but I think the other important thing after the three points is the defense – again at home we have a clean sheet – that’s very pleasing.”
But after a solid defensive display Pellegrini also acknowledged that his side will face plenty more games like this, as teams sit in at the Etihad and defend for their lives.
“Hull is a good team, I was concerned that we failed to break them down in the first-half but 2-0 is a good scoreline – we can’t win every game four or five nil, that’s a good thing about the Premier League.”
However Pellegrini will be happy that his team have won two from three heading into the international break. A solid beginning to his tenure at the Etihad, but his team must improve.