Manchester City v West Brom: Manuel Pellegrini won't blame injuries as an excuse for Premier League failings

One point from six in City's last two games has seen them slip from title favourites but Pellegrini won't bemoan absence of key players

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini is reluctant to use injuries as an excuse with regard to his side's faltering Barclays Premier League title challenge.

With five matches left to play, City - beaten by Liverpool and then held to a draw by Sunderland in their last two fixtures - are in third place behind the Reds and Chelsea in the race to be crowned champions, albeit with games in hand over those two clubs.

Pellegrini's squad have been hit by some notable injuries during the season, with top-scorer Sergio Aguero more than once having to spend a considerable spell on the sidelines.

Aguero returned from his latest enforced absence in the Liverpool match, and City were then without the likes of Professional Footballers' Association player of the year nominee Yaya Toure, David Silva and Jesus Navas in the Sunderland game due to injuries.

 

But, speaking ahead of Monday's home clash with West Brom, Pellegrini said: "We have had an important amount of injuries during the whole season.

"I think it has not only been our team, though.

"We play so many games with a lot of intensity and maybe all the teams that play in all the competitions have a lot of injuries.

"But, of course, it is a problem."

Concerns over Silva and Navas as Toure remains sidelined

Sunderland went into their match against City on Wednesday lying bottom of the table but almost secured all three points at the Etihad Stadium from a contest that ended 2-2.

And with his team coming up against another side in the thick of the relegation battle on Monday in Albion, Pellegrini is certainly not viewing it as an easy assignment.

"Of course it (Wednesday's match) was a disappointment because we always want to win every game," the 60-year-old Chilean said.

"But I said before that game that playing against a relegation-threatened team is not easy.

"Sunderland did very well to get a point.

"Always playing against these teams at the end of the season is very difficult.

"You see what happened with Crystal Palace against Everton (Palace won 3-2 at Goodison Park, also on Wednesday) and what happened with our team against Sunderland - they are very difficult teams because they play at 100 per cent for every ball.

Pellegrini dismisses exit fears

"I hope we can have the same attitude and the same intensity (as them)."

On the fact that City will be playing after their title rivals have been in action over the Easter weekend, Pellegrini added: "I think we must have in our minds not what is happening with the other teams - just to try to win our games.

"We must do this whether we are playing before or after they play."

City playmaker Silva's ankle problem makes him a doubt for the West Brom match.

Pellegrini has revealed winger Navas has also been struggling with an ankle issue, and Monday's game will come too soon for midfielder Toure to return after his leg injury, which it was suggested earlier this week could keep him out for up to a fortnight.

Defender Matija Nastasic, out of action since February because of a knee complaint, remains unavailable.

PA

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Books should be for everyone, says Els, 8. Publisher Scholastic now agrees
booksAn eight-year-old saw a pirate book was ‘for boys’ and took on the publishers
Life and Style
Mary Beard received abuse after speaking positively on 'Question Time' about immigrant workers: 'When people say ridiculous, untrue and hurtful things, then I think you should call them out'
tech
Life and Style
Most mail-order brides are thought to come from Thailand, the Philippines and Romania
life
News
i100
Life and Style
tech
Voices
Margaret Thatcher, with her director of publicity Sir Gordon Reece, who helped her and the Tory Party to victory in 1979
voicesThe subject is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for former PR man DJ Taylor
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband

Chuka Umunna: A virus of racism runs through Ukip

The shadow business secretary on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
Yemen crisis: This exotic war will soon become Europe's problem

Yemen's exotic war will soon affect Europe

Terrorism and boatloads of desperate migrants will be the outcome of the Saudi air campaign, says Patrick Cockburn
Marginal Streets project aims to document voters in the run-up to the General Election

Marginal Streets project documents voters

Independent photographers Joseph Fox and Orlando Gili are uploading two portraits of constituents to their website for each day of the campaign
Game of Thrones: Visit the real-life kingdom of Westeros to see where violent history ends and telly tourism begins

The real-life kingdom of Westeros

Is there something a little uncomfortable about Game of Thrones shooting in Northern Ireland?
How to survive a social-media mauling, by the tough women of Twitter

How to survive a Twitter mauling

Mary Beard, Caroline Criado-Perez, Louise Mensch, Bunny La Roche and Courtney Barrasford reveal how to trounce the trolls
Gallipoli centenary: At dawn, the young remember the young who perished in one of the First World War's bloodiest battles

At dawn, the young remember the young

A century ago, soldiers of the Empire – many no more than boys – spilt on to Gallipoli’s beaches. On this 100th Anzac Day, there are personal, poetic tributes to their sacrifice
Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves

Follow the money as never before

Dissent is slowly building against the billions spent on presidential campaigns – even among politicians themselves, reports Rupert Cornwell
Samuel West interview: The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents

Samuel West interview

The actor and director on austerity, unionisation, and not mentioning his famous parents
General Election 2015: Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Imagine if the leading political parties were fashion labels

Fashion editor, Alexander Fury, on what the leaders' appearances tell us about them
Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka: Home can be the unsafest place for women

The architect of the HeForShe movement and head of UN Women on the world's failure to combat domestic violence
Public relations as 'art'? Surely not

Confessions of a former PR man

The 'art' of public relations is being celebrated by the V&A museum, triggering some happy memories for DJ Taylor
Bill Granger recipes: Our chef succumbs to his sugar cravings with super-luxurious sweet treats

Bill Granger's luxurious sweet treats

Our chef loves to stop for 30 minutes to catch up on the day's gossip, while nibbling on something sweet
London Marathon 2015: Paula Radcliffe and the mother of all goodbyes

The mother of all goodbyes

Paula Radcliffe's farewell to the London Marathon will be a family affair
Everton vs Manchester United: Steven Naismith demands 'better' if Toffees are to upset the odds against United

Steven Naismith: 'We know we must do better'

The Everton forward explains the reasons behind club's decline this season
Arsenal vs Chelsea: Praise to Arsene Wenger for having the courage of his convictions

Michael Calvin's Last Word

Praise to Wenger for having the courage of his convictions