Manuel Pellegrini took no pleasure in being proved correct but Manchester City’s surprise 2-1 home defeat to West Ham illustrated his belief that the English Premier League title race is far from over. The league leaders saw their 11-match winning streak brought to an end thanks to first half goals from Victor Moses and Diafra Sakho for a West Ham side that has won all three of their away games this season, at Arsenal, Liverpool and, now, City.
The day started with City having the potential to move 14 points clear of defending champions Chelsea had results gone their way. Instead, Slaven Bilic’s West Ham moved to within three points of City despite Kevin De Bruyne’s goal late in the first half giving the home side hope of continuing their unbeaten ways.
“We never believed, because we won five games, we were champions of the Premier League,” said Pellegrini. “We have to play 32 games more, 96 more points, so nobody can believe that.”
City were without injured captain and defender Vincent Kompany as well as influential forward David Silva, who picked up a calf injury in the pre-game warm-up. Pellegrini refused to use their absences as an excuse and, instead, criticised his team’s collective lack of concentration for their defensive woes and mistakes.