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Published: 22:32 | 19/4/16

Pellegrini happy after draw

Chilean praises battling Newcastle

Manchester City boss Manuel Pellegrini declared himself happy with his side's 1-1 draw with Newcastle at St James' Park on Tuesday night despite potentially ceding ground in the race for a top four finish.

Sergio Aguero netted his 100th Premier League goal, the second fastest to achieve the milestone behind Alan Shearer, before Vurnon Anita secured a deserved point for the Magpies.

The result leaves City in third place, one point clear of Arsenal in fourth and five clear of Manchester United in fifth having played a game more than both.

"I am happy. We started winning the game but we could not have the control after that. We knew that it was very tough," the Chilean said afterwards.

"The officials have nothing to do with the result. I didn't see the team with the energy from Saturday, but we play after three days at the end of the season and it is not easy for the team to recover.

"We are just trying to add points. Sergio Aguero's record is deserved, he makes an important difference for us. I am happy for him. Vincent Kompany played well, he played 90 minutes and he was OK."

"We knew it was going to be a very tough game. Newcastle are playing against relegation and they are at home.

"We created chances but not enough to win. Every game in the Premier League is intense and if you don't keep it up for 90 minutes you don't win games.

"It is very important now to make some rotation as we play at the weekend and then Real Madrid next Tuesday.

"Always in the Premier League every point is important if you want to reach your targets."

The result leaves Newcastle two points from safety in 19th with four games remaining, but manager Rafa Benitez says his team will fight until the end.

"I have to be pleased because against a team like Man City, to do what we have done from 1-0 down, the reaction of the team, you have to be pleased," he said.

"I haven't seen the replay of Sergio Aguero's goal but they tell me he was offside. You can not change anything. I think they should get it right but we cannot change it. That's it.

"The team has more belief now, the fans are behind the players and they will fight to the end. Today was an example of that."

By: Kieran O'Daly

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