Arsenal and Leicester stay atop as Manchester City closes the gap
Week 22 results: Aston Villa 1-1 Leicester, Stoke City 0-0 Arsenal, Manchester City 4-0 Crystal Palace
Arsenal and Leicester still lead the League with 44 points each while MCFC is just a point behind the leaders. Here are the reactions of the coaches after each respective game.
Pellegrini – Manchester City FC:
“It was very important to win, having made five changes,” he told press. “We have to play so many games in January and it is very important to have the whole squad involved in what we are doing if we are to remain a competitive team in all of the competitions.
We must be able to win games regardless – that’s why I was so happy with the complete squad from the beginning. If from now to the end of the season, we have top players, our team will be stronger. I am happy we didn’t concede and kept the clean sheet but also that we scored goals too. We have not changed our style – we are playing the same way.
“We are continuing with our mentality to try and score goals.”
Ranier- Leicester City:
“We lost two points tonight. We started very well, we scored a goal, but after missing the penalty the Aston Villa players took a new energy. If we score a second goal, we close the match. In the second half, we expected them to look for the long ball.
It was a battle, but we were very calm, very attentive. We are sad tonight, but I say to the players, if we make a performance the result is not important for me. The performance tonight was good. We played well in the first half. The second half was a battle and we played in the battle”.
Wenger – Arsenal FC
“We did well to battle. They made the game physical, they were up for it, the players were up for it and they were up for a direct game. We had to have a physical response and show solidarity, fighting spirit and togetherness. We lacked a bit of creativity to force a way through and on top of that we missed good chances. They were fighting from the first to the last minute. We wanted to win the game but looking at our history here it is a positive result. Looking at the results of the other teams that played at the top, it is a positive result. But overall, we missed two points today.
We had all the ingredients of a team that is ready for a fight and respond. The pitch was not easy as well but we lacked the final ball on the counter attack but we did fight and we have to give credit to the team.
think Stoke was dangerous as well. I think Stoke played very well today in the air but we had clear-cut chances with Giroud and Campbell. Maybe there was a dangerous situation when Theo Walcott could have got a penalty or a free-kick on the edge of the box. Stoke have remarkable defensive discipline and they played very well.
on Stoke playing well…
[They] always [have a good game] when Arsenal come to Stoke. I must say I cannot fault my team for their attitude, it was spot on the way my team responded to the challenge. I used to be a bit more creative but overall it was a solid performance”.