Manuel Pellegrini is confident Eliaquim Mangala will soon find his feet in the Manchester City defence.
The French centre-back has endured a difficult start to life in the Premier League following his £32m summer arrival from Porto.
I am sure we bought the centre-back that we need in him
Mangala experienced a tough time during City’s 2-1 defeat at West Ham on Saturday and Hammers’ boss Sam Allardyce later revealed he had targeted the centre back.
The 23-year-old also struggled in a game at Hull a month ago, but manager Pellegrini is not losing faith.
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"The same thing happened with Martin Demichelis last year. Remember all the criticism for him after he just arrived in the Premier League," he said ahead of Wednesday night's Capital One Cup fourth-round tie at home to Newcastle.
"I think Eliaquim Mangala is a young player and he has a lot of experience. I am sure we bought the centre-back that we need in him.”
City have been inconsistent this season, conceding 17 goals in 14 games in all competitions.
But the Chilean added: "I think it's very important to have clean sheets. As a team you play easily or you play with more trust when you don't concede any easy goal at the beginning.
"But I think we must improve in general, not just talking about the defending. We must create more chances, we must score more goals.
"We are working on that and I am absolutely sure we will return to be the same team we were in the most important part of last season.
"But the only way is to compare last season with this season. And I don't think we are any worse this season."
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