Manuel Pellegrini admits he began to doubt his Manchester City side would find a way through before they scored twice at Villa Park on Saturday.
The champions enjoyed much of the possession against a resolute Aston Villa, but they were struggling to find a way past Paul Lambert’s outfit. That was until Yaya Toure scored an excellent goal with his left foot from outside the box on 82 minutes, and this was followed six minutes later when the tireless Sergio Aguero with his fifth Premier League goal of the campaign.
Although the season is still early, failure to collect maximum points in the Midlands would have given Chelsea the chance to further enhance their lead at the top of the table when they take on Arsenal on Sunday. In that sense it was important for the Blues to see off the challenge from Villa, but Pellegrini admits he had his doubts before the late double goals from his stars.
“I was thinking a little bit that it wasn’t going to be our day,” he said on Sky Sports. “I have told the players that in May you are going to win or lose the Premier League by just a point or so, so everyone you drop on the way makes it more difficult. It is very difficult to recover the points against a team like Chelsea, and the only way to do it is to win every game.”
Many of City’s star-studded squad now travel to various parts of the globe for international duty, after which they resume their campaign with the visit of Tottenham Hotspur on October 18.