• Champions League

Pellegrini miscalculates City winning-goal margin

ESPN staff
December 10, 2013
Manuel Pellegrini sent Sergio Aguero to warm up © Getty Images

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini inexplicably appeared to miscalculate the mathematical conundrum that would have given his side top spot in their Champions League group, after his side came from 2-0 behind to pull off a heroic victory against Bayern Munich.

Pellegrini's decision to replace striker Edin Dzeko with midfielder Jack Rodwell in the closing stages of the game appeared to be a ploy to cling onto the 3-2 lead his side had established, as he opted not to go for the additional goal that would have given City the valuable top spot.

With Pellegrini admitting "he would have been tempted" to put star striker Sergio Aguero on for the closing stages if his side had scored a fourth goal at the Allianz Arena, it was evident that he believed a three-goal winning margin was required to seal top spot and yet just one more goal would have been enough.

"I was tempted if we scored the fourth goal [to make an attacking substitution] and that is why I sent Aguero to warm up," Pellegrini admitted to Sky Sports, seemingly unaware that a 4-2 win would have been enough to seal a prized seeding in the last 16 of the Champions League.

"It is very important to be the first of the group, but not the most important thing. It was difficult to score two goals and [David] Silva could not play more than 70 minutes."

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