Roberto Mancini: 'Joe Hart saved everything, I should say thank you to him. He was fantastic'
Roberto Mancini last night hailed one of the great British goalkeeping performances by Joe Hart, which preserved City's Champions League hopes and led Wayne Rooney to describe him as "the best in the world".
The City manager, who had criticised Hart for describing the side's performance in defeat to Real Madrid last month as unacceptable, said he owed much to the 25-year-old England goalkeeper. "He saved everything. I should say thank you to him," Mancini said. "He did a fantastic play. If it is the best in football history, he did very well."
Rooney tweeted that "I have to say that Joe Hart has been fantastic. For me he is the best goalkeeper in the world," though Hart was only called into such service because of the lack of defensive discipline which allowed German champions Borussia Dortmund's fast-running side to overrun City at times.
"Our performance was very, very poor but I think at the end of the group this point could be very important," Mancini said. The Italian hinted that profligacy and indiscipline, in the way that the club went for all-out attack, were the problems that needed to be rectified before the club's next game in Ajax on 24 October.
"I think the Champions League is totally different from every championship," Mancini said. "When you play, you play against the best players, so when you have a chance you have to score. If you don't score and after you concede, like we conceded this evening, it's difficult that we can win.
"First half we had three or four incredible chances and I don't know why we didn't score but this can happen," he added. "The problem was our performance. This is the problem. In Champions League we can't play with all players that attack. We need to defend with all players. If you don't defend, if you don't run like Borussia Dortmund did this evening it's difficult."
Hart said that "off the top of my head" he could not remember making as many saves in one game. "I thought Dortmund were different class," he admitted. "It took a good defensive effort by us to keep it to just one. I hope this result is important and that it is not a waste of effort. This game shows just how tough this group is."
City's owed their point to the penalty, for handball, awarded in the final minute against defender Neven Subotic, who later said he felt unjustly punished. "It was very, very unlucky, I don't know what I did, if I have bad karma, I don't know why [the referee] called it," Subotic said.
"I am sad this is the way they scored, if they'd scored from a normal goal OK we'd say the deserved it but it's a painful way to [concede] the equalizer."
The Borussia Dortmund coach, Jürgen Klopp, was gracious in his disappointment at two deserved points dropped. "I think we were the better side overall. [Sergio] Aguero had one or two great chances and it could have been different. In that respect it wasn't an undeserved draw," Klopp said.
Latest in Sport
Manny Pacquiao secures $12.5m mansion by giving seller four tickets to 2 May fight with Floyd Mayweather
WrestleMania 31: What time does it start? Full match card and preview ahead of WWE event
Cricket World Cup 2015: Has the success of the tournament spelt the end for Test matches?
Manchester United transfer news: Chris Smalling and Phil Jones face uncertain future with contract renewal talks on hold
Malaysia Grand Prix 2015 LIVE: Sebastian Vettel wins in just his second race with Ferrari with Lewis Hamilton second and Nico Rosberg third
- 1 Is this bridge haunted by the ghost of nu rave?
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 The day I starred in Only Fools and Horses
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
Revealed: Putin's army of pro-Kremlin bloggers
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew