Pellegrini hails professional City
Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini praised his players for a 'professional' job after they eased into the Capital One Cup semi-finals with a 3-1 win at Leicester.
Pellegrini made eight changes but still fielded a side that was far too strong for the Sky Bet Championship promotion hopefuls at the King Power Stadium.
Edin Dzeko struck twice after Aleksandar Kolarov opened the scoring with a fine free-kick on a night on which City were rarely troubled.
Pellegrini said: "It was very important for the team to continue in the Capital One.
"We knew it was not going to be an easy game because Leicester are a very good team, they were playing at home and were motivated.
"The team played very well, especially in the first half.
"Maybe when the score was 3-0 we stopped a little bit in our pace.
"Leicester had possession of the ball in the last minutes but I think it was a professional performance in all senses."
The only negative for City was the loss of influential right-back Pablo Zabaleta early in the game with a hamstring injury.
With Micah Richards already sidelined with a similar problem, City could now have difficulties in that position in the weeks ahead.
Pellegrini said: "Pablo has a problem with his hamstring. We will see tomorrow how serious it is.
"It is the only bad thing of this game.
"Of course now we don't have a (right) full-back. Maybe we will have to see what we can do in that position."
A lay-off for Zabaleta would add to City's injury problems with top scorer Sergio Aguero also out with a calf problem.
Striker Stevan Jovetic, having recovered from his own calf injury, might have hoped to replace him at Leicester but was ruled out through illness.
Jovetic, who has made just five appearances since signing from Fiorentina for Â£22million in the summer, had been set to play but pulled out after travelling.
With no other players having made the trip, Pellegrini could name only six substitutes.
Pellegrini said: "Jovetic was ill one hour before the match and he couldn't play.
"It is a pity for him. He is a very good player and would have had his chance today to play.
"He couldn't do it but we hope it is a small thing and he will be fit for Saturday."
Another player who will hope to face Fulham at the weekend is Dzeko, who took his chance to shine in Aguero's absence.
Pellegrini said: "I have always said Edin Dzeko is a very important player.
"He hasn't been playing normally in the 11 starting because (Alvaro) Negredo and Aguero are playing well, but every time he has played he has played very well."
Despite their enthusiasm Leicester struggled to make an impression in the game, although they did claim a late consolation through Lloyd Dyer.
Manager Nigel Pearson was at least pleased with the effort and said: "We were beaten by a very good side but I think we were punished severely for one or two mistakes.
"I would have liked us to keep it tighter for longer.
"I think the players deserve a bit of credit for trying to put them under pressure and we did get a goal back.
"It would be very easy to allow a side of Man City's quality to totally dominate and rub salt in the wounds but I think the players kept going.
"That was important but we are still disappointed."
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