New Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini was unable to avoid defeat today in the club’s first match of the Nelson Mandela Invitational. His club was held to a clean sheet in a 2-0 defeat at the hands of South African side Supersport United.
Two second half goals by United’s Kermit Erasmus and Mame Niang were enough seal the victory for the home side at Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium earlier today. To make matters worse for the Citizens, dominating midfielder Yaya Toure limped off the field before the match ended with an apparent injury.
The former Malaga boss was quick to come to the defense of his players after defeat, despite the strong lineup fielded by City. Pellegrini opted to send out a strong side including captain Vincent Kompany, keeper Joe Hart, and new boy Fernandinho.
“The players were clear with what they had to do in this game. I spoke with them before the match and we had four or five days working together,” Pellegrini explained to reporters in a post-match interview, as reported by Goal.com.
“We’re not prepared to play the way we want them to play so this was a normal match for preseason. I’m not worried and this is what we expected.”
Expected or not, this is not a trend that supporters of the club will want to continue as the blue half of Manchester prepares an assault on cross-town rivals Manchester United to reclaim the Premier League trophy. Manchester City will be looking to improve and build on this performance when they take on Amazulu FC next on July 18th.
With the resulting loss Pellegrini was in the company of Manchester United rival, David Moyes, who was also unable to obtain victory in his managerial debut in a 1-0 loss against the Thailand All Stars.
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