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Pellegrini: ‘We Were Very Unlucky’

Manchester City fell 2-1 to Juventus in the opening game of the Champions League group stage on Tuesday, after failing to hold on to a 1-0 lead.

An own goal by Giorgio Chiellini in the 57 minute gave City the lead, but Juventus turned things around and grabbed the three points after goals by Mario Mandzukic and Alvaro Morata.

City manager Manuel Pellegrini wasn’t happy with the result, but he was pleased with the way his team played.

“I think it was a strange game, I don’t think that we deserved to lose this game,” Pellegrini said. “We played better than Juventus, we had three clear chances to score, I think Gianluigi Buffon made a good save and we were very unlucky, especially on their first goal.

“We played against a strong team, with not too many options, but I think we controlled the game and really I don’t remember Juventus creating important chances.”

Pellegrini admitted that the big thing that separated the two teams were Juventus effectiveness in the final third of the pitch.

“I expect that when we have chances we must score, because this is the Champions League and the difference between the teams is very slight, especially such a strong team as Juventus,” Pellegrini said. “Of course if you have clear chances and you don’t score… Juventus didn’t create so many but they finished well.”

Despite the loss, Pellegrini didn’t seem too disheartened and made sure to point out that there’s still a long way to go.

“In the last two seasons we started by losing (at home) and both seasons we qualified for the next stage,” Pellegrini said. “We are just starting, it’s a game you never want to lose here at home because they are three very important points but the group is just starting.

“We have 15 points more to play for so it depends on the way we play the next game.

“It’s not the best way to start losing at home against a strong team but it doesn’t mean we won’t qualify, we have to play against Juventus there and another four games, and we’ll see which team has the most points at the end.”

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