• Premier League

Pellegrini fails to publicly back Hart

ESPN staff
October 28, 2013
Chelsea edge City

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini was evasive when asked to give his support to goalkeeper Joe Hart after his mistake handed Chelsea a late 2-1 win on Sunday.

City's trip to Chelsea looked to be heading for a 1-1 draw after Sergio Aguero scored in the second half to cancel out Andre Schuerrle's opening goal.

But in the dying minutes of the game a mix-up between Hart and defender Matija Nastasic allowed Fernando Torres to net a late winner for the Blues.

This is not the first time Hart has come under pressure in recent weeks, and Pellegrini refused to offer his public backing to the side's current first-choice shot-stopper.

"What I think, I won't talk about," Pellegrini said in The Guardian. "I repeat that the analysis I do with individual players I do with the players, not the press. You must ask [Hart] how his confidence is.

"I talk just internally with the players. We are going to see the best way to arrange things. We are losing stupid points.

"The three defeats we had away we didn't deserve but the reality is we have lost them and we've had the important responsibility for the goals the other team scored. We try to arrange. We have time."

City's backup goalkeeper is Costel Pantilimon, who has made just one appearance this season in September's 5-0 Capital One Cup win over Wigan, while 35-year-old Richard Wright is also available.

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