Pellegrini calls for more clean sheets

City manager warns defenders must improve ahead of tonight’s clash with CSKA Moscow

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini. His team face CSKA  Moscow behind closed doors,  a restriction imposed  on the  Russian club over fan behaviour last year. Photograph: Peter Powell/EPA

Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini. His team face CSKA Moscow behind closed doors, a restriction imposed on the Russian club over fan behaviour last year. Photograph: Peter Powell/EPA

 

Manuel Pellegrini believes Manchester City have no advantage in playing CSKA Moscow behind closed doors and has warned his defenders they must improve.

Uefa has announced that the Russian champions will take on City in an empty Luzhniki Stadium in light of disturbances involving the Russian club’s fans at Roma a fortnight ago.

Supporters were barred from Tuesday’s 1-0 Champions League home defeat by Bayern Munich as punishment for behaviour during the visit of Viktoria Plzen in last season’s group stage.

City travel to Moscow on October 21st after claiming only a point from their opening two games.

Why we win

City have conceded seven goals in five matches, and Pellegrini admits the defence needs to tighten up.

“I think that we must improve,” he said. “It’s very important to have a clean sheet because when you are playing, if you are always conceding one goal before you score, you are playing against the time, against the rival, against the score.

“One of the things we did last year was improving clean sheets. We had a second half of the season with a lot of clean sheets, but at this moment last year we conceded more goals. But we cannot concede five goals in three games. We scored seven and we draw two games and won one, but it’s too much.”

Own goal

“Mangala was not out because he made a mistake against Hull. I thought for that game it was better for [Martin] Demichelis as they are going to play without a striker because Totti plays always as a midfielder.” Guardian Service

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