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Monday 24 September 2018

Nasri says City must tighten up as a team

Manchester City's Samir Nasri scoring in the Champions League. Picture credit: Nigel Roddis/REUTERS
Manchester City's Samir Nasri scoring in the Champions League. Picture credit: Nigel Roddis/REUTERS

SAMIR NASRI believes the whole Manchester City team must take responsibility for their defensive shortcomings.

Manager Manuel Pellegrini criticised his side's defending after they laboured to a 4-2 win over Viktoria Plzen in the Champions League last night.

The Czech side caused a number of problems for City at the Etihad Stadium and it took late goals from Alvaro Negredo and Edin Dzeko to secure victory in the Group D encounter.

Ultimately it may have mattered little as City had already secured their place in the last 16, but defensive issues –in the absence of captain Vincent Kompany – keep recurring.

Nasri knows the free-scoring attack – which has now rattled in 22 goals in the last four home games – cannot repeatedly come to the side's rescue.

The France international, one of City's four goalscorers, said: "We are scoring a lot of goals but we cannot score four goals every game. We need to improve how we defend as a team.

"We conceded two goals. In the last game in the Champions League we conceded two as well and (against) Bayern Munich three. We need to improve, as a team, how to defend."

One person who could not be blamed for the goals conceded was Joe Hart, who was restored to the team after games on the bench.

Mistakes

The England goalkeeper was dropped earlier this month after a series of errors, but made some good saves and no mistakes on his return.

Nasri said: "For me Joe Hart had a fine game with fine saves.

"It is good for him, it is good for his trust and for the whole team."

City twice surrendered a lead after a penalty from Sergio Aguero and a Nasri volley had put them ahead.

Tomas Horava and Stanislav Tecl scored the Czech side's equalisers, but their spirited display was eventually killed off by a tap-in from substitute Negredo and a Dzeko header in the last 12 minutes.

The win kept City's hopes of finishing top of their group alive, but they will need to win by at least 3-0 in their last game at Bayern Munich. Yaya Toure will be suspended for the trip following a booking.

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