Pellegrini: City will improve

  • Last Updated: August 18 2014, 8:49 BST

Manuel Pellegrini is confident Manchester City will be stronger for the second weekend of the new Barclays Premier League season than they were for the first.

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini speaks after the win at Newcastle
Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini speaks after the win at Newcastle

The reigning champions head for Liverpool next Monday evening having launched the defence of their title with a 2-0 victory at Newcastle which was harder fought than the scoreline suggests.

However, manager Pellegrini will spend the intervening period working with players who were given an extended break after World Cup duty in Brazil, and he is sure there is much more to come from them.

The Chilean said: "Of course, it will be very important for us to have one week more.

"Maybe we also have to give minutes to other players and we will see during the week which 11 starters we are going to play against Liverpool.

"We have a lot of players for whom one week more will be very useful."

City led from the 38th minute at St James' Park when David Silva applied a decisive finish to Edin Dzeko's sweet back-heeled pass, but the result remained in doubt until substitute Sergio Aguero doubled their lead in stoppage time after Newcastle counterpart Ayoze Perez had gone desperately close to an equaliser.

Team Versus Team
Man City v Liverpool
Man City v Stoke
Arsenal v Man City
Man City v Chelsea
Hull City v Man City
A Villa v Man City
Man City v Tottenham
West Ham v Man City
Man City v Man Utd
QPR v Man City

There were impressive performances throughout the City side, but Dzeko was in particularly fine form as talks continue over a new deal.

Pellegrini said: "Edin finished last season playing very well. For me, he was one of the best players in the game, not only because he participated in the first goal.

"He caused problems through the game. He won a lot of aerial duels, he held up the ball - he had a really complete game.

"But I repeat, Edin finished last season playing the same way as he has started."

For opposite number Alan Pardew, there were positives in defeat with new boys Jack Colback and Remy Cabella turning in enterprising displays.

Pardew said: "There were a lot of things about our performance today which bode well for the other 37 games we have got coming up. The new guys were all solid today.

"I thought a couple of them were outstanding in Jack and Remy, both in different ways, really.

"Jack's energy and power and competence with the ball and Remy's feet and ideas, which didn't all come off today, but you know he is going try something, he is going to make a moment and when he has a hot day, he is going to punish teams.

"The first half, I thought Man City edged it and deserved to lead, but the second half, I thought we deserved an equaliser."