The Manchester City manager will not try and stop his captain from travelling to link up with his national team but is adamant there is no way he can feature in either match.
Manchester City coach Manuel Pellegrini is hoping for more goals from striker Sergio Aguero after the Argentine’s 90th-minute penalty sealed their 2-1 comeback win at Borussia Moechengladbach.
City will have to find a way to succeed without captain Vincent Kompany after the defender, who has missed the last three games with a calf injury, was again ruled out.
Pellegrini insisted progress had been made since his appointment in 2013: “I don’t think we have failed in Europe”.
“We have to play our very best to win this game, but it is not a final”.
The 62-year-old, speaking at his pre-match press conference at Borussia-Park, later laughed off the incident.
“I just have two passports and I brought the wrong one“, Pellegrini explained the Guardian when he was asked about the incident.
Sergio Aguero’s last-gasp victor could prove a turning point for City in the Champions League, if they can build on the result in their next match against Sevilla.
Pellegrini said that we weren’t really surprised with their approach to the game as our homework showed us they were a fast team who could quickly “recover metres” from midfield and their box, but he had to give praise to Joe Hart for his performance on the night as well.
After getting off to a good start with five Premier League wins, City lost their opening Champions League game 2-1 at Juventus a fortnight ago and have lost both of their last two games including Saturday’s 4-1 drubbing at Tottenham Hotspur. “When he pops up in the spaces, the player in my team responsible for that space will fight him“.
Pellegrini added: “He is an important player”.
And with Monchengladbach returning to Europe’s premier competition for the first since the club’s heyday in the 1970s, Pellegrini admits that the Bundesliga outfit – who have won back-to-back league games under caretaker manager Andre Schubert following the resignation of Lucien Favre – will prove a hard opponent. All three were part of the squad and will be assessed prior to the game. A fearsome foursome is all very well but if the other six outfield players are struggling, then any team will have problems.
“We kept in the game, defended well, but we still lost”.
That goal then appeared to kick the visitors into life, City behind for just 10 minutes before Otamendi drew them level following Kevin De Bruyne’s right-wing corner, which was met by Martin Demichelis at the near post. “We will also play to our strengths”.