PEP GUARDIOLA DEFENDS HIS DECISION NOT TO MAKE ANY SUBSTITUTIONS AS MANCHESTER CITY DREW WITH CRYSTAL PALACE.
Manchester City failed to find the breakthrough against Crystal Palace as they were held to a goalless draw at Selhurst Park to hand the initiative to Liverpool in the Premier League title race.
Pep Guardiola defended his decision to not make any substitutions after Manchester City were held to a goalless draw by Crystal Palace, saying he had “no regrets”.
City dominated proceedings at Selhurst Park but were unable to make the breakthrough, meaning second-placed Liverpool are four points behind City with a game in hand, with the two sides meeting at the Etihad Stadium on April 10.
Guardiola did not make a single change during the match, despite having Raheem Sterling and Gabriel Jesus on the bench.
“The guys who were playing were playing good, that’s why I didn’t make changes,” City manager Guardiola told BBC Sport.
“We didn’t score, that was the mistake. The team that was there today was there before and will be there in the next game. I am very pleased with the performance and the way we played.”
Guardiola added to Sky Sports: “There are still many games to play, we have to win a lot of games but the way we played, there’s no regrets about the team. We would have preferred to win of course but the game was well played.”
City had 18 shots and twice hit the woodwork through Kevin De Bruyne and Joao Cancelo, while Aymeric Laporte failed to score with the goal at his mercy.
Bernardo Silva also spurned an excellent opening when he poked wide from Jack Grealish’s cross.
“We played a really good game,” added Guardiola.
“In 90 minutes we concede mistakes a little bit, but the way we played was really good. Luck doesn’t exist in football. We have to score goals and we didn’t do it. We played to score goals and concede few. We struggled a little bit.
Palace have now lost only one of their last nine matches in all competitions and went close to snatching a winner when Conor Gallagher fired over from a tight angle.
“It was a difficult game,” manager Patrick Vieira told the BBC.
“I was really pleased with the players. We worked hard, we worked well. We defended well and created a couple of chances. I’m happy with the team spirit and organisation today.
“When you play against City you have to concede chances. It’s all about having your luck on the day but also putting in a shift as a team. We did that today. We fought for the luck and we got a point. We’re happy with the performance.
“[I was happy with] the way we managed the game. We defended well as a team. At times during the season we’ve struggled during difficult periods. But today we stuck together. We had some chances. It was that kind of feeling you can score one and win the game 1-0. I’m happy with a draw.”